Suc­cess will be hard won for play­ers, ad­mits Rafa

Sunday Sun - - Football -

NEW­CAS­TLE United boss Rafa Benitez has told his team to face up to the fact they will have to carve out re­sults this sea­son if they are to be a suc­cess.

The Mag­pies were out­played by Wat­ford, with the game done and dusted just af­ter the hour mark as Benitez’s side suf­fered their fourth con­sec­u­tive de­feat in the Premier League.

When asked if it was time to aban­don the 4-4-2 for­ma­tion, Benitez said: “We will an­a­lyse how the play­ers are and who are the best for every game.

“But it’s not just a ques­tion of the shape of the team or the for­ma­tion, it’s just a ques­tion of un­der­stand­ing that we are a team that has to work very, very hard if we want to get re­sults. “That’s what we have to do.” The Toon boss be­lieves that the 4-4-2 de­bate is a sur­prise given some peo­ple wanted to see that dur­ing a stint of games in which he played a 4-5-1 sys­tem.

He said: “We were do­ing that be­fore with one striker and still we were com­plain­ing about, ‘We need to play with two strik­ers’.

“Now we are play­ing with two strik­ers and los­ing games, we are say­ing, ‘Mmm...’.

“We have to re­alise that we are a team that has to work hard from now un­til the end of the sea­son.

“It’s not a sur­prise for us that when you make mis­takes, you pay for that. We knew that was the Premier League and it’s what’s hap­pen­ing now.”

Benitez was then asked if the team was work­ing as hard as it should be.

He re­sponded: “They are work­ing hard, but in the sec­ond half, when we con­ceded, we were a lit­tle bit dis­or­gan­ised.

“We have to go back to the prin­ci­ples that [we had when] we were com­pact, we were work­ing as a unit.

“It doesn’t mat­ter if you play with two strik­ers or one striker if you are com­pact enough to de­fend and at­tack.” Wat­ford’s Marco Silva could re­lax af­ter half an hour

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