Newcastle 'kicking' themselves following Liverpool defeat

Credit PA
Howe has faced criticism following his decision to substitute Tonali, Gordon and Isak with Sean Longstaff, Harvey Barnes and Callum Wilson. Credit: PA

Eddie Howe says Newcastle are 'kicking ourselves for sure' following defeat against Liverpool.

The Newcastle manager was left with mixed emotions after the visitors mounted a remarkable fightback.

The Magpies were within nine minutes of a victory over Jurgen Klopp's side of just 10 men, before they were floored by two late sucker punches to lose 2-1.

After the match, Howe admitted his players were hurting following Darwin Nunez's last-gasp double, but sought to put a painful reverse a week after a narrow defeat at champions Manchester City into perspective.

He said: "I'd want them to be hurting after that because we pride ourselves on trying to win first and foremost and if we can't, then we do everything we can to draw the game."

Howe added: "That's certainly a game we shouldn't have lost.

"My role in this now is to calm everything down and try to see perspective. Results will always sway opinions, but from the first two games we've had, we've been very close to more points, we've been very competitive and there have been some really good signs.

"We probably haven't had the points that we deserve."

Three minutes after Anthony Gordon had taken Newcastle into the lead. Liverpool skipper Virgil van Dijk was sent off for bringing down striker Alexander Isak.

Newcastle were unable to build upon their advantage, due to keeper Alisson, pulling off a save to dig out Miguel Almiron's goal-bound volley, and the post, which denied the same man before Nunez's match-winning cameo.

Asked if he could learn more from a narrow defeat than he would have from a 1-0 victory, Howe said: "It depends how you view it. If we don't take collective responsibility and don't analyse the game properly, then no.

"But I think if you do those things and always take ownership of what's happened - and that includes me along with the players - then I think you can come out of it stronger, and that's what we'll endeavour to do."

He added: "I'm proud of the players in many ways for what they've delivered today, but we are kicking ourselves for sure that we didn't get something out of the game."

Howe, who replaced Sandro Tonali, Gordon and Isak with Sean Longstaff, Harvey Barnes and Callum Wilson, also defended his substitutions amid suggestions they had cost his side the game.

Furthermore the Newcastle manager is keeping his fingers crossed after defender Sven Botman suffered an ankle injury.

How said: "I don't know how bad it is, but certainly we wish him a speedy recovery. We'll have to wait and see. I'll speak to the medical team and see how bad Sven's injury is."

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