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Rafa Benitez defends his Newcastle team and reacts to Kenedy's Carabao Cup performance

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez felt his Newcastle United side “deserved more” after they crashed out of the Carabao Cup.

Nottingham Forest booked a place in the third round of the competition with a 3-1 win at the City Ground last night.

Loan signing Salomon Rondon cancelled out Daryl Murphy’s early opener with a 92nd-minute goal.

Matty Cash restored Forest’s lead, and Gil Dias netted a third for the home side after Ayoze Perez had a penalty claim waved away after being brought down by goalkeeper Luke Steele.

Perez had to be restrained by his team-mates after the final whistle as he tried to confront referee Jeremy Simpson.

“The penalty was so obvious, and we had the feeling we deserved more,” said Benitez, who had made seven changes for the second-round tie.

“We’re disappointed. We lost the game, and even more was the way we lost.

“We conceded early goal. They were not creating clear chances, we didn’t have clear chances either.

“We could see what happened at the end, the way you lose you have to be disappointed. It’s not the first time this year this has happened.

“The positive thing for me is you could see the reaction from the team and the we have to manage the situation better.

“The decisions weren’t in our favour, and it was difficult to take.

“A lot of players seem to do well in terms of effort. They were working hard. It was a question of managing the final minutes better.

“After the penalty appeal, we had the feeling we deserved more.

“The other day we had two shots on target and Chelsea had three.

“When you have chances you have to take them. One thing we have to improve is the final pass and creating chances.

“It was a team that wanted to win and fight until the end and tried to win. They can say they did that and that.

“They didn’t have too many problems in defence, and you could see it could be a draw.”

Benitez had admitted before the game that he didn’t think he had the squad to challenge for a cup this season.

“To win a competition with our squad will not be easy,” said United’s manager.

“My team selection was trying to win, nobody can complain about that.

“We were pushing and trying to win. With two or three injured, we couldn’t take risks with some other.

“This team was still good enough to win”.

Kenedy was recalled to the starting XI.

However, the winger was ineffective before he was switched to left-back in the second half.

“The team is difficult when you have new players, the understanding,” said Benitez, who had handed full debuts to Yoshimori Muto and Sean Longstaff.

“I tried him as a left full-back, and you expect he has to learn in different positions.

“Muto needs to learn it’s a bit quicker in England. He was fine in terms of effort.”