Newcastle United head coach John Carver bemoaned his side’s poor spell either side of the interval after a 3-2 Premier League defeat to Swansea City.
Out-of-form Newcastle took the lead through Ayoze Perez in the 20th minute, but were pegged back in first-half stoppage time by Nelson Oliveira’s first goal for Swansea.
Garry Monk’s side then took the lead through Gylfi Sigurdsson four minutes into the second period, with Jack Cork adding a third before Siem de Jong marked his first appearance since August with a late consolation.
The defeat was Newcastle’s seventh in succession, leaving them 14th, five points above the relegation zone with four matches remaining.
“We started quite well,” Carver said. “I played a different formation with two strikers and a diamond and I thought we played some good football and could have come in 2-0 up.
“We were in control of the game but the only worry was set plays which is our Achilles heel.
“The team talk changes because we’re level and it’s disappointing, but I was still quite positive. It was a mad five minutes either side of half-time.
“We’ve got four massive games. I saw enough in the first half and I can’t be too critical of anyone in that dressing room.
“Yes I’m getting stick from the crowd, but I can take that on the chin and I won’t give up on it and I’ll fight right to the end.
“It’s my job to try and pick them [the players] up. I can’t by hyper critical of them because they don’t deserve that. They’re giving us everything, but sometimes that’s not enough.”
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