Alan Pardew: "His biggest asset is his personality. He's a winner.
"Whatever role I have given him, he has tried to do that to the best of his ability - he has played in two or three roles for me.
"His all-round play has been excellent and tonight, he was a leader for the team and put in a performance to match that.
"When you compare him to other players, it's difficult because really, he hasn't had that long a time here in the Premier League.
"But this year, you would have to put him in the top four or five, for sure.
"The players deserve a lot of plaudits tonight because they have put in some fantastic performances.
"You could highlight one or two that were exceptional, but as the team manager, I am just proud of all of them.
"My job is to make sure we don't get too carried away with that pat on the back because we have got a game in two days' time which is very important to us."