December 15, 2017 / 8:30 AM / a month ago

Newcastle not battling relegation just yet, says skipper

(Reuters) - Newcastle United captain Jamaal Lascelles believes the side have not yet fallen into a relegation scrap despite a woeful run of recent form that has seen them plummet down the table after losing seven of their last eight league games.

Newcastle’s poor run has left them in 16th position, one point ahead of the three teams directly below them - West Bromwich Albion, Crystal Palace and West Ham United - and just three above bottom side Swansea City.

“When you keep getting bad results it’s going to knock you a little bit as a human being,” Lascelles told reporters on Thursday.

“...With the manager and players we have, we can definitely sort things out. I‘m not going to say we’re in a relegation battle. There’s still loads of games to play.”

Everton handed Newcastle their latest defeat with a 1-0 win at St James’ Park on Wednesday and Lascelles said that his team mates shared their frustration after the match and hopes the exchange can fuel a positive reaction.

“There were a few home truths said but the reality is we’re not in a great position and sometimes things need to be said that players don’t want to hear,” Lascelles added.

“Hopefully, it’ll get a reaction. We don’t want to leave it too late.”

Rafa Benitez’s side travel to seventh-placed Arsenal, who are winless in their last three league games, on Saturday.

Reporting by Aditi Prakash in Bengaluru

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