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Debuchy urges Toon to keep battling

Newcastle defender Mathieu Debuchy has urged his team-mates to respond positively to their Tyne-Wear derby humbling by neighbours Sunderland.

• Shearer: Toon deserved nothing
• Duffy: Gutless Toon humiliated
• Randall: Sessegnon derby glory

The Magpies produced a lacklustre performance as they crashed 3-0 to Paolo Di Canio's side - their heaviest defeat to the Wearsiders for more than 30 years.

Manager Alan Pardew has urged his players to show spirit in the final five Premier League games of the season, and Debuchy wants to see the same quality.

"We don't have a choice - we've got some important matches coming up, and that starts next weekend," the Frenchman told the Daily Express.

"We need to get to work and make sure we're up for it - and we will start against West Brom at The Hawthorns.

"It's very difficult to lose a match like that, a derby. For a few of us, it was our first derby. We know it was a very important game for the club and the fans, so we're very disappointed.

"We would have preferred to have gone out there and won to make sure we had a bit more space between ourselves and the bottom three, but we're going to fight until the end."

Debuchy said Newcastle had "great character in the dressing-room" and would try to ensure that they won as many games as possible until the end of the season.

He also urged the Newcastle fans to stick with the players despite the intense disappointment of a home derby defeat, saying: "I can understand it's very difficult for them.

"But it's also very difficult for us to take a 3-0 setback like that. I just want to tell them that we really need their support - it's really important for us."

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