Alexander Isak makes Liverpool admission as Newcastle United star reveals ‘annoying’ injury
Alexander Isak reflected on his Newcastle United debut against Liverpool and his long - but successful - wait for a UK work permit.
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The Magpies’ £58million club-record signing wasted no time in announcing himself on the Premier League stage by opening the scoring at Anfield.
However, United couldn’t hold out for a result as Roberto Firmino’s equaliser turned into three points following Fabio Carvalho’s 98th-minute winner.
“It’s never nice to concede a losing goal in the last seconds like that,” Isak told local reporters after the game. “Obviously I start disappointed but we have to use this feeling and try to use it as energy for the next game against Crystal Palace.
“It’s not an easy stadium (Anfield) to come and play at. I was literally just thinking about going out there and playing like I usually do and that didn’t change too much, except the tactical parts. It felt good and hopefully it’ll get better.”
Isak’s first goal for Newcastle was one of pure class and composure. The Sweden international was picked out impressively by Sean Longstaff before producing an emphatic finish into the roof of Alisson’s net.
“I found a good position in the box and then the pass from (Sean) Longstaff was incredible to receive,” Isak said. I was just thinking of putting it in the back of the net - and I got a quite good finish, I suppose!”
The travelling Newcastle supporters were sent into raptures as Isak sprinted over to celebrate in front of his new fans.
“It’s incredible to have away fans that make that noise,” Isak continued. “It gives you a lot of energy. That is something very special, especially at away games. It was really nice to see.”
The 22-year-old did find the net again just after half-time as he jinxed past Andrew Robertson and Joe Gomez, however the offside flag denied him and Newcastle a second goal.
That was Isak’s last piece of action after being forced to withdraw on 64 minutes with a dead leg. He should, however, be fit for Crystal Palace on Saturday.
“Yeah, I’m OK. I got a dead leg in the first half which is a bit annoying, but it is nothing serious.
“It’s my job to help the team with goals, assists but also more than that. I’m happy that I managed to score my first goal. I was unlucky with the second one, it was just offside. It feels good and hopefully we can get the three points on Saturday.”
It was a debut well worth the wait after the striker was forced to miss the draw at Wolves on Sunday as he waited on a work permit.
Indeed, the green light from the UK Home Office only arrived hours before the Liverpool game but Isak certainly showed to Newcastle fans, and others afar, what a special player the club has on its hands.
Isak said: “Obviously it’s a bit frustrating to travel with the team and not knowing if you can play or not. I prepared as if I can play, but you can understand it’s not the same.
“It’s a really good bunch of players that I’m playing with now, so it’s been very easy (to settle in) and I’m very happy for that.
“The last week and a half has probably been not normal for the club as well. We’ve had a lot of games in a short period of time so the training load has been quite low which hasn’t been ideal for me as I hadn’t played for the last week.”