Rafa Benitez admitted that his players on Saturday at Norwich made too many mistakes at crucial times of the game, but he did see some positives in the second half that he will take from the game.
But Newcastle have to cut out the mistakes as the games are running out and we are now a full 6 points from safety – maybe 7 if you consider our poor goal difference.
We have a game in hand over Norwich, but since we have taken one point from the last six games since beating West Brom at home, that´s small comfort.
Rafa Benitez – on the sidelines on Saturday
This is what Rafa said after the devastating loss to Norwich on Saturday:
“After the game, everybody’s heads were a little bit down,”
“But I was telling them ‘listen, we have to manage the momentum of the game much better, the bits when we were attacking and then in the last minute when we had to defend well’.”
“That is part of the work I have to do every week, give them some tips so they know what to do when they are under pressure and it is maybe more difficult to think.”
“When you have just lost a game like this one, you have to be a little bit down.”
“But my job is to give them the confidence, enough confidence for the next games and to lift them because I think the reaction was quite positive in the second half.”
“Obviously, we can’t wait for another reaction, we have to start the games in the right way and try to score goals and win games.”
“But the one thing that we’ll take as a positive is the reaction of the team, scoring two goals away from home, and see if we can keep this way of playing for the next seven games.”
“A game is not the same as a training session, but I would say that for the first ten minutes we started well – everything was fine – and then we made two or three mistakes.”
“We were talking about that – that we cannot do that. We have to play simple and have more confidence.”
“But when you make these mistakes in the position that you are it becomes more difficult.”
“We conceded a late goal with a free kick we could have maybe avoided and after the reaction in the second half was what I was expecting to see from my team.”
“Then there was another mistake and these things are what we have to manage if we want to win more points and stay up.”
“We have one week, and players are coming back so we will have to see how they are and just keep training,”
We are hoping two of the players back for next Saturday at Southampton are Fabricio Coloccini and Paul Dummett, which hopefully can stabilize the defense a little bit.