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Rafa Benitez in a minority of one “The reaction of the team was good”

4 years ago

Rafa Benitez was putting a brave face on it after Watford took all three points on Saturday afternoon.

The defeat was bad enough but the manner of it will surely be a bigger worry for the United boss.

It was pretty even in the opening stages and indeed Joselu totally missed the ball when well placed inside the box….only for Watford to then go up the other end a few minutes later and score from a very similar position.

That was on 19 minutes and from that point Newcastle were well beaten.

Rafa Benitez though insisted ‘We made a couple of mistakes and we paid for that’.

The Newcastle manager adding ‘The reaction of the team was good (after conceding). We were pushing, we were pressing…’.

However, Newcastle huffed and puffed but never looked like scoring, whilst Watford looked menacing every time they came forward, attacking with pace and purpose.

As for bouncing back after four defeats in a row, Rafa is once again consistent in his message – ‘we have to work harder and better – that is it’.

Rafa Benitez:

“We made a couple of mistakes and we paid for that.

“They had a couple of runs down their left which were difficult to control.

“We were pushing in the first half, we were on top for a while, but then didn’t score.

“We have to realise where we are, what we have, where we want to be.

“I have said before, it is going to be a tough season and we have to keep working as hard as possible.

“Everybody knew they (Watford)  were doing well and that we needed to be strong, to be solid…we made a mistake.

“We started well but we made a mistake, we conceded the first goal, then you have to go forward.

“The reaction of the team was good. We were pushing, we were pressing…on top of them, but the second goal changed everything.

“In the second half you do have to take more risks and we conceded another goal.

“Then it was more difficult for us to react and to do the right things because when you are under pressure, the anxiety means you make more mistakes.

“It’s something that we have to realise could happen, you could lose games, because we are in the Premier League and it’s another level.

“Everybody needs to know that if we want to improve, we have to work harder and better – that is it.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle United 0 Watford 3


Watford: Hughes 19, Yedlin (OG) 45+1, Gray 62

Possession was Watford 48% Newcastle 52%

Total shots were  Watford 12 Newcastle 12

Shots on target were Watford 4 Newcastle 2

Corners were  Watford 3 Newcastle 6

Referee: Chris Kavanagh

Newcastle United:

Elliot, Yedlin, Clark, Lejeune, Manquillo, Ritchie, Shelvey, Diame (Merino 69), Murphy (Perez 77), Joselu (Mitrovic 69), Gayle

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Gamez, Perez, Mbemba

Crowd: 52,188 (Watford 2,200)

(Alan Shearer reacts to the Watford defeat HERE)

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

(Marco Silva thought Newcastle were lucky to only get beat 3-0 – read what he said HERE)


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