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Jamaal Lascelles names two things that will decide relegation struggle

3 years ago
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Jamaal Lascelles was looking at a pretty much perfect fortnight.

The excellent win against Manchester United had lifted Newcastle out of the relegation zone and boosted confidence & belief.

Then a 13 day gap thanks to non-FA Cup involvement meant a little more time to rest and spend time with family, plus a longer than usual preparation time for the next match.

Keeping the same team, it looked very much like the same result as Newcastle led 2-0 with 80 minutes gone.

Only for Bournemouth to spoil the weekend/fortnight to an extent with those two late goals.

Jamaal Lascelles and Matt Ritchie were awarded North East player of the year and after picking up the award, the Newcastle Captain reflected on life at Newcastle United.

Lascelles believes that ever since Rafa Benitez arrived at St James Park ‘the club has been on the rise’.

A big statement considering there has been a relegation in that period but nevertheless true.

You wouldn’t like to think where we be now if Rafa had walked away in summer 2016.

Despite Saturday’s late setback, Jamaal Lascelles is still very upbeat and said ‘The way we are playing I think we are going to be more than safe.’

However, on top of playing well, the Captain also reminded everybody of how Newcastle have picked up a decent amount at this stage with arguably one of the weakest squads, saying ‘personality and character’ are what will be needed to carry Newcastle to safety this season.

Jamaal Lascelles speaking after picking up North East Football Writers’ (joint with Matt Ritchie) player of the year award:

“Since the manager (Rafa Benitez) has been here, the club has been on the rise and the city has been really upbeat.

“Things have been going really well so we are going to try and keep it that way.

“At the minute we are playing really good football.

“We wish we were in a better position than we are, but there are still 10 games left, and the way we are playing I think we are going to be more than safe.

“Everyone is really confident with each other and with a manager like this behind us, that brings even more confidence.

“It is really tight.

“There are a lot of teams in it and it is a tough league.

“It has probably not kicked off as much as it normally does, it is normally one or two teams that have gone already.

“We can’t focus on other teams and we have got to make sure that we take the games step by step and prepare things the right way.

“We are playing good football and now it comes down to personality and character.”

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