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Rafa Benitez – Newcastle desperate for January signings and everybody knows that including Mike Ashley

3 years ago

Rafa Benitez was left reflecting on yet another matchday without a win.

To make matters worse, the team’s shortcomings were particularly exposed by the fact there was only one shot on target, and that being a 60 yard effort from Jonjo Shelvey in his own half.

The lack of creativity and goalscoring ability in the team is alarming.

As usual Rafa Benitez was looking for positives to try and buoy up the team, saying that if Joselu and Diame had taken their chances then it could have been very different.

In over 11 hours of Premier League football this season, Newcastle have only scored one goal off the boot, Yedlin’s lung-bursting run at the Etihad leaving a tap-in. The other three from headers and Diame should have made it four when missing with a free header from eight yards out.

Joselu’s ridiculously lame effort when sent through one on one summed up the team’s problems, he didn’t even get a shot off as a lack of ability, belief and confidence left him frozen and waiting for a tackle to save him.

Ayoze Perez was yet again anonymous.

If Newcastle are relying on this pair to score and create goals then the challenge to survive looks all but hopeless.

Jonjo Shelvey actually looked quite good but in his typical quarterback style he gets the ball, makes time for himself, and then sees absolutely nothing in front of him – a complete lack of movement for him to potentially put a pass into.

Rondon has shown some signs of promise despite not being fully fit whilst Muto is yet to show any real quality but clearly has pace, at least until January the main hopes appear to be that the loan striker’s injury proves not to be too serious and quickly gets fully fit as well as Muto showing enough for Rafa Benitez to finally start him in the Premier League.

The manager says that everybody, including Mike Ashley, must know signings are desperately needed in this January window.

What happens then is a massive issue but before that we are left wondering just how many points can be accumulated in the meantime and where the goals are coming from?

Rafa Benitez:

“We’re not really (short on attacking options), it is injuries and the fact Muto is still trying to adapt to the Premier League.

“It is more that we are looking at other positions and we are looking for something different.

“We don’t have this and we don’t have this, but, if the team can compete, we can get results.

“It is so hard when you concede first because you can lose confidence but we have to keep working hard, keep that belief and confidence.

I think he (Mike Ashley) knows (we need reinforcements in January) because we have been talking with Lee Charnley for a while.

“I think everybody knows (we need to make January signings)…

“The team are not winning but they are working so hard – they are so close.

“We can’t analyse everything now about January because the team is doing a great effort and hopefully when we have two crucial months in November and December, when we play a lot of games against teams we can compete against, we get results.

“We have to be sure that in these next two or three months that we can compete and hopefully do well, then we don’t have to talk so much about January. We have to start winning now.

“The reality is that if the team are doing well, normally the fans are happy, when you are not doing well…football fans expect to see the team doing things right. “

The Peter Kenyon takeover rumours:

“Before the game I try to concentrate on the game, after the game I have to talk with the media, I have no idea (about any takeover claims).”

On the defeat to Leicester:

“Obviously I’m disappointed because conceded two goals from set-pieces and didn’t take our chances.

“We had those two chances (Joselu and Diame) and that could have changed everything, then we concede the penalty and then when we were competing in the second half, we concede from the corner.

“We have done well, then we make mistakes, and when you concede it is always more difficult for you.

“We knew that this could be a difficult game today but we conceded from a penalty and a corner, this always makes it harder to take.

“The second goal killed us mentally and Leicester were well-organised, worked hard, and they have some good players.

“When you concede it is always difficult for you and when things are not going in your favour, you concede penalties like this.

“We tried to be more offensive but we didn’t take our chances and were exposed in the second half.

“This team is working hard and you cannot complain about that.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 0 Leicester 2


Leicester: Vardy 30, Maguire 73

Possession was Leicester 59% Newcastle 41%

Total shots were  Leicester 12 Newcastle 6

Shots on target were Leicester 5 Newcastle 1

Corners were  Leicester 9 Newcastle 5

Referee: Simon Hooper

Newcastle United:

Dubravka, Yedlin (Manquillo 80), Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Ritchie (Murphy 65), Shelvey, Diame, Atsu, Perez (Muto 69), Joselu

Unused Subs:

Darlow, Schar, Longstaff, Hayden

Crowd: 51,523 (3,000 Leicester approx)

(Video – Absolute disgrace as Mike Ashley sends in his people to take down Rafa Benitez and Kevin Keegan banners – Watch here)

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

(To read the Newcastle player match ratings go HERE)

(Disgraceful lies as newspaper headlines claim ‘Newcastle fans turn on Rafa Benitez after Leicester’ – Read HERE)

(Paul Merson has his say on the Leicester match, Mike Ashley and Newcastle United HERE)

(Read our Newcastle 0 Leicester 2 match report HERE)


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