Tuesday 21 November 2017

Howe urges Cherries to push on

Newcastle United 0 Bournemouth 1

Steve Cook of AFC Bournemouth scores his side's first goal. Photo: Getty Images
Steve Cook of AFC Bournemouth scores his side's first goal. Photo: Getty Images

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Eddie Howe has urged Bournemouth to build upon their emergence from the Premier League relegation zone after a last-gasp victory at Newcastle. Defender Steve Cook headed the Cherries to just their third league win of the campaign two minutes into stoppage time.

However, while delighted with the resilience his side showed to snatch the points on Tyneside, Howe insists it is only a start. He said: "It's big psychologically for everybody connected with the club. I don't think it matters at what stage of the season you're at, whether it's the first game or the last game.

Steve Cook and Asmir Begovic of AFC Bournemouth celebrate. Photo: Getty Images
Steve Cook and Asmir Begovic of AFC Bournemouth celebrate. Photo: Getty Images

"It's obviously worse in the last game, but being in the bottom three is psychologically difficult. To lift ourselves out of this position temporarily is a good thing, but now we have got to try to build on it."

Cook's winner came as the visitors launched a late assault, with Marc Pugh seeing a late effort blocked onto the post and substitute Jermain Defoe forcing a diving save from 'keeper Rob Elliot, although they had earlier survived a stern examination of their defensive solidity.

Things might have been different, however, had Magpies striker Dwight Gayle not had a 16th-minute strike ruled out for offside with television replays suggesting the officials had got it wrong.

Despondent manager Rafael Benitez was clearly unhappy with referee Paul Tierney's performance, but was keeping his own counsel when asked about the disallowed goal. He said: "I will not talk about the decisions because I am not very happy with the decisions."

Bournemouth's striker Joshua King (L) vies with Newcastle United's English midfielder Jonjo Shelvey. Photo: Getty Images
Bournemouth's striker Joshua King (L) vies with Newcastle United's English midfielder Jonjo Shelvey. Photo: Getty Images

Benitez admitted his side had been made to pay for not taking their chances, and for a series of mistakes which contributed to their own downfall. He said: "We didn't do what we had to do on a lot of occasions and our mistakes, in the end we paid for that."

It was Newcastle's second successive defeat. Benitez, who saw captain Jamaal Lascelles leave the stadium on crutches with an ankle injury, said: "From September 1, I was worried and what I did was to work harder, and that is what I will do now. We are where we are and this is further proof that we have to keep working hard."

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