Fabricio Coloccini hopes Newcastle sign striker before Everton game

Fabricio Coloccini
Fabricio Coloccini

Fabricio Coloccini is hopeful Newcastle United’s squad will be stronger by the time the club’s resumes its relegation fight.

The relegation-threatened club remains third-bottom of the Premier League after Saturday’s 2-1 defeat to Watford.

The Newcastle United players huddle together for a team talk before the game at Watford

The Newcastle United players huddle together for a team talk before the game at Watford

Newcastle are not in action again until February 3, when they take on Everton at Goodison Park.

In the meantime, United are looking to sign at least one player – a striker is the club’s priority – before this month’s transfer window closes a week today.

Steve McClaren’s side have struggled for goals all season.

And striker Aleksandar Mitrovic, signed from Anderlecht last summer, is struggling to shoulder the club’s goalscoring burden in his first season on English soil.

Captain Coloccini has acknowledged the need to improve the “quality of the team and the squad” before the February 2 deadline.

“I can’t really speak about whether or not players will come in,” said Coloccini.

“It’s something that the manager and the club have to decide.

“Obviously, it is better for us if we can get more players to come in with us.

“It’s better to improve the quality of the team and the squad, but it’s not something we have to worry about as players. It is for other people to decide.”

Watford took a 2-0 lead through strikes from Odion Ighalo and Craig Cathcart.

Defender Jamaal Lascelles gave United hope of taking something fromm the game with a headed goal on his full Premier League debut.

United, however, were left to rue the other chances that got away.

“It feels like it’s the same story again, really,” said Coloccini. “We had a lot of chances, but we couldn’t score.

“We had our instructions, and I thought we did fairly well in the first half.

“But we conceded right at the start of the second half, and then it’s always hard to score and get back in the game after that, especially when you’re playing away.

“We haven’t been playing that badly, but when we’ve been on top of games, we’ve not really taken advantage of that.

“I thought we played really well for the first 15 minutes, but then I think they dominated the first half after that.

“We created a lot of chances, and played quite well in the transition, but we couldn’t score.

“I think it’s something we need to learn, and we need to learn quickly because we cannot allow it to keep happening like it is.

“We are missing chances, and conceding too many chances to the teams we are playing against. That is something we have to do better.

“It’s one step forward and then one step back at the moment. We played well against Man United and West Ham, and there were moments in this game where we played well too.

“But we still got punished for our mistakes and we have to improve. It’s important that we start keeping a clean sheet.”

Coloccini also feels Newcastle are “too nice”.

“Maybe we are too nice,” said the 34-year-old. “It is true that we need to win more tackles.

“If you look at all the 50-50s at the moment, maybe we are losing more than the opposite side and that is not good enough.

“Sometimes, in our team, that can make the difference. We have great football players with the ball, but we need the ball. And to get the ball, we need to be winning that tackle.”