Rafa Benitez: No time for excuses at Newcastle United


"At the start of September you could see it could be a hard season", said Benitez, whose side had fought back to 2-2 and were chasing the victor when they conceded a bad third, the ball eventually going in off the boot of their own player, Ayoze Perez.

Newcastle did equalise through Dwight Gayle but it just set the stage for Leicester's late victor. The Toffees are unbeaten in their last three games, winning twice and drawing once, with their last game ending in a very good point at Anfield against Liverpool.

However, when asked if the defeat means investment in January is imperative, Benitez said: "After a game is not the time for me to talk about that".

Gayle had levelled the score in the 73rd minute with a superb left-footed strike. That might change, a third successive home defeat that leaves Newcastle just two points above the relegation places, could force his hand, to sell now for the money that is on the table, but he is as stubborn as she is.

"We have to create more chances, if possible, and not give them so many".

"But that is football".

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"But this team's working so hard - it's trying so hard to win games".

However, his need is all the more pressing with the Magpies having lost six of their last seven games heading into the showdown with Sam Allardyce's improving side.

He said: "I think we deserved this win with a fantastic positive attitude".

"We're reacting in the right way when things are going wrong, but we have to learn to manage the situation".

But midfielder Merino does not agree with such an assessment and believes that the Tyneside based outfit are good enough to avoid the drop without making an additions to the squad. We'll try to get the three points.

Tottenham, who will return to a brand new stadium next to their old White Hart Lane ground next season, are still 15 points adrift of leaders Manchester City who play on Sunday. With this in mind, we are backing Everton with odds of 9/4 from Bet365.