Faint alarm bells can be heard around the Newcastle United camp as they had a tough Easter weekend.
On Good Friday the Magpies won their fans over with a solid performance against Leeds United. Then on Monday it went horribly wrong as the Toon were hit for three by Ipswich Town away from home.
Despite the mixed emotions floating around Tyneside, Christian Atsu is trying to uplift his team. After the loss, the winger insisted that his team are not out of the race for promotion to the Premier League, even if they are wounded from recent results that have seen the title slip from them.
Not playing the blame game
In football it is not uncommon to hear players or managers use incident, sometimes wrongly. However, Atsu gave a refreshing take on the series of unfortunate events.
The Ghanian international referenced the performance against Leeds when talking about the loss to Ipswich: "It’s frustrating because before today we’d played really well against Leeds before we conceded that last-minute goal."
However, Atsu refused to hold any other circumstances accountable for the results: “But we cannot blame anyone, we just have to blame ourselves," the loanee continued by saying that the team has to "correct our mistakes and continue working hard for the future."
Continuing the theme of forward looking and optimism, Atsu also added: “We’re really disappointed we lost this game, but we have three more games to play" reminding everyone that "we are still in a good position, and we have to keep fighting until the end."
Dissecting what went wrong
In breaking down the game, Atsu was also open and honest with what went wrong for the Toon Army. The pacey 25-year-old began by explaining “We didn’t start well, and we gave them confidence,"
“We were not compact" he continued, attributing the loss to another factor.
Atsu was not keen to dwell on the negatives. Instead, reminded the media that all is not lost for Newcastle, “But we have three more games to play and something to fight for, so we have to keep on doing that."
Yet still, the loss was bound to play on the team's mind, and Atsu confirmed this with one simple sentence:“No one is happy with today."
Give everything in the next game
Maintaining the theme of optimism and fight in his post match comments, Atsu concluded his thoughts by expressing that the Magpies are certainly not out, however down they may be.
“Everyone is down, but we cannot keep on like this – we have to make sure we change everything with our next game."
How will they achieve this? “We have to give more, fight, and just give everything in our next game, which is more important now.”