FABRICIO Coloccini has thanked Newcastle United fans for sticking by the players – and insisted the Capital One Cup IS important to the players.
Supporters turned on manager Alan Pardew during the club’s shambolic 4-0 defeat to Southampton.
There were more protests against under-fire Pardew - whose side take on Crystal Palace in a third-round Capital One Cup tie tonight (8pm kick-off) - during last weekend’s home game against Hull City.
But fans still got behind Coloccini and his team-mates at St James’s Park, where Newcastle came from behind to draw 2-2 thanks to two goals from fit-again Papiss Demba Cisse.
And the club’s long-serving captain - who understood their anger at the St Mary’s Stadium performance - was grateful for their backing after a troubled week on Tyneside.
“I think we had a good tempo during the game,” Coloccini said.
“We had a difficult week as well, and I think all the team showed the ambition that we want to do the right things.
“Sometimes you can do well, sometime not, but we tried our best, and I have to say thank you.
“We didn’t expect the support that we got. Once more, the fans showed they support us like always.
“It’s a big point to make, because I know it was a very tough week for them as well.
“I want to say thank you from me and all the lads for the way they supported.”
Winless United are bottom of the Premier League with five games played, but before the team can have a chance to improve its standing, it might take on Palace in the cup.
While the league is the long-stated “priority” for Newcastle’s hierarchy, Coloccini is adamant that the players will be going all out to claim a place in the next round of the competition.
“For us, it’s very important,” said the 31-year-old.
“It’s not about it being the cup or not, we need a win to get confidence again and show the fans again that we want to do the right things.”
Meanwhile, Newcastle fans can pay on the turnstiles at Selhurst Park tonight.
United supporters will be housed in blocks R, S and T of the Arthur Wait stand, and admissions will be £15 for adults and £10 for concessions.