Benitez confirms massive Newcastle injury setback

We all know Benitez as a manager that prefers to keep his players, supporters and the opposition second-guessing his lineups, one that would be unperturbed about altering a team that defeated the current second best club in the Premier League. Mid-table Bournemouth has three more points than Newcastle.

The Magpies let their 2-0 lead at half time, thanks to a double from Dwight Gayle, slip as the Cherries netted two goals in the last 10 minutes to rescue a point at the Vitality Stadium and send the visitors away bitterly disappointed after their impressive first 45 minutes.

"Everyone was expecting him to make the difference, but after the game against Manchester United, we at least feel we have enough quality in the squad".

"We had to find a way to open them up".

He told Match of the Day (24/04, 22:30): "For as good as his passing was, his defensive side of his game in the latter stages didn't live up to it".

Slimani's misfortune comes at a time when there is real positivity within the Newcastle camp following the shock 1-0 win over Manchester United in their last outing.

Although he is still struggling with a thigh injury, I believe on-loan Leicester striker Islam Slimani could prove to be a great signing when fit. They had to come from behind in their wins over Arsenal and Stoke, and they grabbed a late victor against Everton.

The Premier League is back for Match Day 28 of the 2017-18 season, which will feature a highly intriguing mid-table clash.

"We weren't very good for 70 minutes, to be honest, but once again I have to praise the character, the attitude, the spirit of the team to come back because it's not easy at this level to do that". They'll be looking to replicate that and see the likes of Jonjo Shelvey get into form when they could seriously use some points for peace of mind within the club.

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