Poyet said matchwinner Fabio Borini had been unlucky to start this, the 148th Tyne-Wear derby, on the bench.
He said: "Fabio was so close to starting because of the way he has been in training and his attitude and how positive he has been."
The Uruguayan continued: "Lee (Cattermole) and Jack (Johnson) were outstanding.
"I tell you what, if there were two players I couldn't take out during the game they were Lee and Jack, and somehow I decided to take Lee off because I wanted to control the ball a little bit more."
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