Thu 14 Dec 2023, 09:42 by Ash Harrison

'We have given everything': Eddie Howe refuses to dwell on the negatives after European exit

'We have given everything': Eddie Howe refuses to dwell on the negatives after European exit
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Newcastle United crashed out of Europe completely last night after falling to a late defeat to AC Milan at St James' Park.

Now, like Britain in 2016 we're wondering if we could have done more and maybe continued a bit further on the European adventure.

While it's easy to get swept away in the negative emotions of it all, we really have a lot of positives to take away from our first Champions League ride in 20 years.

That VAR in the Paris game has a lot to answer for

Indeed, things could have been very different were it not for that ridiculous VAR decision in Paris. These are the small margins that make football so entertaining.

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Speaking to NUFC TV after the game, Eddie Howe looked back on those little things that shaped our campaign but admitted that we weren't at our best in the campaign except for the home tie against Paris Saint-Germain.

“I think when you look at the whole sequence of games you think we weren’t far away, we really weren’t. You go back to Dortmund here we were in a great position after two games and we had chances that day, and that felt like a big defeat but then we came back. With Paris and of course what happened there, and then tonight.

“I think we’ve really enjoyed it. We’re hugely disappointed but we probably haven’t given, apart from the Paris game at home, the best version of ourselves but there are valid reasons for that but I think we have given everything to the competition to try and be a success in it.”

We just need to push and get back there next year and prove ourselves

Howe did mention the injury list and the resulting fatigue on those players forced to play every game but was adamant that it's not an excuse, merely a reason.

Well, we're using it as an excuse because we genuinely believe that if we'd had fewer injuries and more players around to rotate, we'd have got out of that "Group of Death" no problem at all.

Now we must focus on the Premier League, fix our away form and push to get back into the competition next year to do it properly.

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