Newcastle boss Steve Bruce addressed the “grumbles” that have begun to grow over his style of play, and identified a fault in his team’s display that contributed to their 2-0 defeat against Chelsea.
The Magpies succumbed to their second straight league defeat without scoring in Saturday’s lunchtime kick off.
Chelsea rarely had to get out of second gear to secure the three points, though Bruce’s men did carve out a handful of opportunities that ultimately did not lead to a breakthrough.
Bruce has come in for criticism for the tactics he deploys, with sitting deep and the lack of a high press seeming to hand the initiative to their opponents.
Speaking to BT Sport after the match, Bruce admitted his start sat too deep and addressed the growing discontent.
“I just thought our best spell in the game was when we conceded the second,” said Bruce.
“They had possession and had a big chance after that. We had one or two opportunities but didn’t take them.
“Maybe in the first half we were a little too deep at times.
“They’re a very, very good side and like I said, when you go high up the pitch they can really hurt you
“There will always be grumbles. We had some important players missing. But Chelsea are a very good team.
“Second half there were one or two details. We had three good opportunities, and against the big teams, you’ve got to take them.”
Lampard finds small niggles in victory
Meanwhile, Frank Lampard was in no mood to celebrate despite seeing Chelsea move top of the Premier League table with a 2-0 win at Newcastle.
Chelsea were dominant throughout and should have won by more. A combination of Karl Darlow’s brilliance and Chelsea wastefulness ensured the scoreline was kept to two.
And after the game, Lampard saw plenty of room for improvement in his side.
“We can’t have it all our own way, but we put the game away with a professional performance,” he told BT Sport.