SIEM de Jong’s looking to make up for lost time at Newcastle United – by keeping the club in the Premier League.
De Jong made a goalscoring comeback against Swansea City last weekend.
I have an agenda to get fit and help the team.Siem de Jong
But the forward’s strike wasn’t enough to stop John Carver’s side suffering a seventh successive defeat.
And 14th-placed Newcastle take on Leicester City on Saturday in desperate need of points.
De Jong – who played 90 minutes for the club’s Under-21s against Derby County on Tuesday night – will be on the bench at the King Power Stadium.
The 26-year-old’s first season at St James’s Park has been beset by a series of injuries, but de Jong – who had surgery on a collapsed lung in February – could still make an important contribution between now and the end of the campaign.
De Jong was warmly applauded as he warmed up against Swansea.
And he’s hoping to repay them for their patience and support by helping the club stay in the top flight.
“I was glad to hear that (applause from fans) when I was warming up along the line,” said de Jong.
“It was just a shame my goal wasn’t enough in the game – the important thing is to get points.
“We have to focus on that, but I have a little bit of an agenda myself, which is to get 100 per cent fit and help the team as much as I can.”
De Jong, however, is not ready to start a game, and the Holland international will again be on the bench for the Leicester match.
“I’ll try to help the team as much as I can,” said de Jong, who could be in contention to start next weekend’s home match against West Bromwich Albion.
“I hope to get some more minutes in. We’ll see how it goes. I don’t think if I’m 90 per cent or 95 per cent that I can help the team (from the start).
“That’s why I need to build up slowly to be ready for the minutes I need to play.
“If I play 90 minutes now, I wouldn’t help the team as much as I could if I waited just another week maybe.”
De Jong says United’s players must keep their focus ahead of the match.
He said: “We know how important it is. We have to try to be at our best to win the game, and not focus too much on the situation, just the game itself.”