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Newcastle United

Benitez rues Cup replay

6th January 2019, 06:02 by Michael Holland

Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez has admitted an FA Cup replay was the last thing he wanted as Blackburn held his side to a draw.

Matt Ritchie's 85th-minute penalty spared the Premier League side's blushes with a 1-1 draw after Bradley Dack had headed the visitors in front at St James' Park, although another game was not on Benitez's wish-list as he attempts to keep the club in the top flight.

Asked if a replay was the worst possible scenario, he replied: "Yes, in terms of another game, another situation that you have to manage with more minutes, more players, more risk.

"I am not happy with another game - I would prefer to win this game and that's it. But if you cannot, at least you have another chance and then try to win the next one."

On a day when takeover speculation and the prospect of another frustrating transfer window were among the main talking points, they rescued themselves in the nick of time to leave their manager at least able to take some positives.

"Some young players playing, some players who have not been playing having 90 minutes under their belts, the reaction of the team after we conceded and (Florian) Lejeune coming back after four and a half months with a serious injury," Benitez added. "Those are positives."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Michael Holland is a reporter with over two decades of journalism experience. A Bolton fan, Michael often writes football articles, as well as having a strong knowledge of golf, cricket and Australian sports.

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