Rafa Explains What Happened Yesterday – “We Cannot Say It Was Negative”

Newcastle were the better side in the first half, and Crystal Palace were the better side in the second half after they were given a very soft penalty by the referee’s assistant – not by the referee.

Clark gave a little pull on a Crystal Palace player, and you see it all the time in the penalty area when corners come over, and it’s very rarely given because it’s so minor.

But not yesterday.

Rafa Benitez – it was not negative yesterday

Here’s Rafa describing exactly  what happened during the game and at the end of the match he was the happier of the two managers that Newcastle got the point:

“We got an extra point, so we cannot say it’s negative.”

“We have to stay calm and be sure that we do what we have to do in order to fight and have more chances to win games.”

“We’re learning. It’s a learning process, but still, we’re playing against good players.”

“Wilfried Zaha can dribble, you know he can, but still, he can do it even if you know.”

“Then we’re trying to manage and do things. But the togetherness of the team’s important.”

“You see it a lot (the pull by Ciaran Clark),” “It’s difficult to say it wasn’t a pull – I cannot say it wasn’t – but also he was pushing my player.”

“The other side will say clear penalty, I will say not.”

“In the first half Zaha was playing as a striker,” “In the second half he went on the wing.”

“DeAndre Yedlin at full-back could deal with the balls in behind, but when Zaha got the ball into feet he did well.”

“Defensively the players did well.”

“In the first half, we were in control and doing well,” “We had another chance to score the second goal.”

“In the second half, the counter-attack made a big difference. If you don’t score the second goal, then you’re under pressure and you have to defend.”

“I was happy with how we were defending against very good strikers. It could be better, but it could be worse.”

“It’s one point in the end, and, more or less, that’s fair.”

“It was very clear from the beginning that we were working really hard, particularly towards the end when we were blocking and running,”

“That’s the only way for us and the others towards the bottom of the table.”

“The fans are fantastic,”

“When you go away, always you can feel them. We would like to win every game and send them home happy.”

“We have more people at home, and if we stick together, we will be stronger.”

Next up are Manchester United at home next Sunday and we somehow have to (try to) get all 3 points in that game.

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5 comments so far

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 5, 2018 at 9:20 AM

    Comment #1

    Decent performance yesterday. Palace are a better team than ours which was underperforming before Woy took over. I think at the start of the season, 4 points from 6 would have been a welcome return. This defence of ours is starting to run in beast mode – we just need to keep the ball better further up the pitch to take some pressure off them

  • RobLeenio

    Feb 5, 2018 at 9:29 AM

    Comment #2

    On survival requirements. 38 points has been enough to guarantee survival in 18 of the 22 completed Premier League seasons so far (82%). 37 points has been enough in 15 of 22 seasons (68%) and 36 points has been enough in 10 seasons (46%). Given how tight it is at the bottom, I can’t see 3 teams scoring more than 36 points, in which case one point per game average (our running total so far with 2/3rds of the season gone) in the remaining games should see us safe, particularly when our superior goal difference essentially counts as an extra point. It won’t be comfortable viewing, but this season was only ever about survival and if we achieve it, we can kick on

  • lesh

    Feb 5, 2018 at 10:20 AM

    Comment #3

    Repost from previous


    Henry Winter and other Ashley critics can say it a million times but Ashley’s oblivious to it all. He cares only about his own self-interest and certainly not one iota about Newcastle United.

    Geordie john

    The flag-happy linesman’s fist pump (when he convinced the ref to award the penalty) really ought to be questioned. In my opinion, it showed he was either pleased that he’d won a pen against us or that he was trying to show that he’s a potential ref.

  • ArtyH

    Feb 5, 2018 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #4

    While this type of play is endemic in all divisions I think a fine for this offence is due. It would certainly make players think twice about it. Anyway if that one was a soft one the Shelvey one was a certain pen, so its swings etc . Palace have better players than us so it was a good result. Zaha, Townsend and others are players who would walk into our side no problem. Zaha needs a good coach and some decent advice and his game would improve no end, always looked like he would score.
    Have to say on our side Mighty Mo continues to impress, come out of his shell last five games, very well done lad! First on the team sheet for me, and I was one of his worst critics last year, please he turned it around, always great tosee a player dig in and change opinions.
    Think if we signed Samir Nasri on a free he could well complement our other loaner’s and help save our season.

  • Olivers Toon

    Feb 5, 2018 at 1:30 PM

    Comment #5

    Have to agree with everything Rafa says there. Zaha moving onto wing changed it and we struggled to cope. Also couldn’t win a header against Benteke for love nor money. Never should have been a pen but a draw was a fair result. My only gripe was that we should have made the merino change sooner. Extra person in the middle of the park and stopped the ball coming straight back!


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