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Measured response from Rafa Benitez after two defeats in a row

4 years ago

Rafa Benitez clearly had plenty to think about after Newcastle United’s exit from the League Cup.

It was an eventual defeat on penalties but a game which Newcastle dominated, as the stats show.

With 32 shots and 61% possession, the only problem was not converting that superiority into more than the single extra time goal from Mohamed Diame.

Rafa Benitez was pleased with the number of chances and much of the performance away at Premier League opposition BUT thinks that a lack of experience as a team cost them, in terms of managing the ‘situation’ and seeing the game out.

Rafa disappointed with the inability to take advantage of the extra man in injury time after Mbokani’s 89th minute dismissal, as well as failing to hold the lead for more than a minute.

As for the dismal penalties, the United boss admitted that the players hadn’t done any special practice in training but says that is irrelevant, as the unique pressure of doing it in matches can’t be recreated on the training pitch.

Rafa Benitez:

“It is something that you can learn from in these kind of situations and you will improve from these kinds of mistakes and penalties, they give you something to learn.

“We didn’t practice them (penalties), because it is different when you do it in a training session, as compared to when you do it in a game – totally different.

The way that we played and the situation which we had, against 10 players and 1-0 up, we have to manage (the situation) better.

“I was really pleased with the performance and the attitude for a long time but disappointed because we then didn’t manage that situation properly when we had the advantage.

“That is something you get with experience and hopefully a match like this will give us that experience, then in the future we will do a bit better when we have this kind of advantage.

“We created so many chances and the way we played away at a Premier League team, means we are strong enough to manage the situation, but we need experience to ensure we can do it in the right way.”

Here are the stats from BBC Sport:

Hull 1 Newcastle 1 (Hull win on penalties)

Goals – 

Newcastle: Diame 98

Hull: Snodgrass 99

Possession was Hull 39% Newcastle 61%

Total shots were Hull 12 Newcastle 32

Shots on target were Hull 3 Newcastle 5

Corners were Hull 3 Newcastle 7

Newcastle starting 11:

Sels, Anita (Yedlin 109), Clark, Lascelles, Lazaar, Hayden (Murphy 105), Shelvey, Ritchie (Atsu 81), Gouffran, Diame, Gayle

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Mbemba, Dummett, Tiote

Referee: Neil Swarbrick

You can follow the author on Twitter @jonniegrieve.

(To read the instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to the Hull match go HERE)

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