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Willems reflects after Magpies beaten at the Bridge

Written by Rory Mitchinson

Jetro Willems felt there was room for encouragement from Newcastle United’s showing against Chelsea despite the Magpies going down to a narrow defeat at Stamford Bridge.

A second-half strike from Marcos Alonso proved enough to see off Steve Bruce’s side and continue Newcastle’s poor run of form at the ground – where they haven’t picked up a single point since a memorable win, courtesy of Papiss Cissé’s superb brace, in May 2012.

The Magpies more than matched Chelsea during the opening half, with Allan Saint-Maximin a thorn in the Blues’ side and frontman Joelinton heading narrowly over the crossbar.

However, Frank Lampard’s troops upped the ante after the interval and were deserving of the lead when it came, and from that point on, United were only feeding off scraps at the other end.

Willems – deployed on the left of a five-man backline once more – admitted the visitors could have shown more in the final third of the pitch, but the Dutchman still remained in reasonable spirits after a relatively solid rearguard display.

“It was close. I think we had the game under control and we were a little bit unlucky,” he told nufc.co.uk. “If it wasn’t for the goal I think we did good defensively – they have a good team and they are difficult players to play against. Attacking, we could do more. In the first half, we could have been more dangerous on the counter attack. We had some chances – sometimes we were unlucky, but sometimes I think we need to just shoot when we are in front of goal.

“We have a good team and we can defend well. What we have seen in this game is we’re capable of doing that. But we need to stick together and do it together. If we don’t do things together, it is difficult. Now we have to turn the game next Sunday into a victory.”

United will likely head into that clash at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League’s bottom three, but Willems doesn’t believe anyone in the Magpies’ camp will allow their heads to drop in the days to come.

“Everything is tight – that’s the good thing – and we are capable of winning games,” he said. “But if we can’t win games, then we have to make sure we don’t lose. Today, it was like that. I think we did our jobs and it’s unlucky we lost. We have to keep going and we have to work hard.”

"Attacking, we could do more. In the first half, we could have been more dangerous on the counter attack."

Jetro Willems

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