Kevin Mbabu reflects on first Newcastle start in draw with Chelsea

Newcastle Utd - Gate

The youngster has admitted he was nervous about coming up against the likes of Eden Hazard and Pedro.

Speaking to the club’s official website, Newcastle United defender Kevin Mbabu described what it was like to make his first start for the club on Saturday afternoon.

Manager Steve McClaren deployed the defender in an unfamiliar left-back role for the visit of Chelsea, but the youngster put in an assured performance in the 2-2 draw with the champions.

It was obviously a big moment for the 20-year-old as he made his bow, and he has admitted that he was feeling nervous before the start of the Premier League game at St. James' Park, but he insists that it was an amazing experience.

"It's a really good feeling to play my first game in the league,” he told nufc.co.uk. “It was an amazing experience.

"I was a little bit nervous during the warm-up but once the game started and I got going, everything was good. It's disappointing not to win the game especially when you are winning 2-0 so late on.”

Nervous facing the likes of Hazard and Pedro

The defender was given a baptism of fire by his manager, with him coming up against international stars such as Eden Hazard, Willian and Pedro in his first senior game.

It was a big step-up for the youngster, who a few weeks ago was turning out for the Magpies' Under-21 side, a wholly different experience to facing last season’s player of the year.

And he says that he had to tell himself to keep calm and treat it like any other game, a tactic that clearly worked for him.

"When you're facing the likes of Pedro, Hazard and Willian, you're going to be nervous,” he added. “But I just told myself to keep calm, treat it like any other game and I think that worked well for me.

"It was very important for everybody to perform; we showed everyone what we're capable of and I think we did very well.”

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