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Football | Barclays Premier League

Sissoko enthused by match-winning debut



New Newcastle United star Moussa Sissoko has challenged his side to repeat the display that saw them beat Chelsea 3-2 as they seek to put daylight between themselves and the Premier League relegation zone.

A January signing from Toulouse, Sissoko immediately endeared himself to the fans of his new club by completing a brace with a last-minute winner against the European champions on his first appearance at St James' Park.

Sissoko's all-action display helped Alan Pardew's side move six points clear of the bottom three but the France international midfielder says they cannot afford to rest on their laurels.

"I am very happy, but we can't forget the fact that this was a team performance," he said. "The team worked together. I played well, but it was a team effort.

"We came away with three points as a team and I hope we can go away and continue to perform like that to climb up the Premier League as high as we possibly can."

Goals from Frank Lampard and Juan Mata put Chelsea 2-1 up in Saturday's game, but Sissoko equalised in the 68th minute by following up after Petr Cech parried a shot from another French home debutant, Yoan Gouffran.

The 23-year-old then capped a memorable performance by drilling home the winning goal from Davide Santon's cut-back in the final seconds of normal time.

"I gave 100 per cent, the very best I could," said Sissoko. "I was signed to do that, to give everything to fight from the first to the 90th minute.

"That's what I tried to do, even though it's not always easy. I went out there from the very first minute until the very last minute and worked as hard as I could."

Sissoko was one of five French players to join Newcastle last month, swelling the number of Frenchmen in the squad to 10.

Newcastle's fans have responded enthusiastically to the French invasion, with many supporters donning berets and comedy moustaches and brandishing Tricolour flags in the stands.

Sissoko, who reportedly cost less than £2 million ($3.1 million, 2.3 million euros), says the welcome he has received from local fans has helped him feel at home.

"I'm settling in really well," he said. "When I am not training, I walk around the city and the supporters will come over and ask me for an autograph, and it makes me feel fantastic when that happens."

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