Rafa Benitez pinpoints where Newcastle need to improve after Liverpool defeat

Rafa Benitez says Newcastle United must be more dangerous on the counter-attack.

Saturday, 3rd March 2018, 7:26 pm
Updated Saturday, 3rd March 2018, 7:30 pm
Rafa Benitez

Goals from Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane saw second-placed Liverpool win 2-0 at Anfield tonight.

Newcastle limited Jurgen Klopp's free-scoring side to just three shots on target.

However, Benitez felt his team should have been better with the ball themselves.

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“I'm not happy – I don’t like to lose games," said Benitez. "The game plan has to be good for 90 minutes.

"We were defending well, and we need to be more dangerous on counter-attack."

Mohamed Diame came the closest to scoring for United. The midfielder forced a fine save from Loris Karius with a shot from outside the area late in the first half.

Newcastle were trailing 1-0 at the time and Benitez felt that Karius' save "changed everything".

Mane made certain of the points for Liverpool with a strike 10 minutes into the second half.

“We had a chance with Diame and that changed everything," said Benitez. "Second-half, we had another mistake, conceded another second goal. I had to change things and we were then more open.

"I'm happy with the approach of the team (and) the work rate, but not the result.

“We knew they were dangerous, the way they pressed quickly. We knew that we had to be careful with that.

"You cannot guarantee you won’t make mistakes, and when you make mistakes, with the players they have up front, you will pay for that."