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Sports News of Friday, 25 January 2019


Newcastle United's dressing room mood has improved recently - Atsu

Atsu has made 17 appearances in all competitions this season Atsu has made 17 appearances in all competitions this season

Newcastle United are currently enjoying a bright mood in their dressing room, according to midfielder Christian Atsu.

Rafael Benitez's men suffered a poor run of games during the Christmas and New Year period but it seems their mojo is back after picking two wins in a row against Blackburn Rovers and Cardiff City.

The Magpies have moved out of the Premier League relegation zone for the first time in several months and have also made it to the fourth round of the FA Cup ahead of their Saturday's fixture against Watford.

"When we lose games, you really have no idea what the dressing room looks like. You don't know how we feel when we go back home; it's like the whole week is miserable," Atsu was quoted as saying by Chroniclelive.

"You don't know how to get it out of your mind, and you don't know what to do to make yourself feel better. We just want to see another game so we can do our best and win the next game.

"This is what we do for a living, and we have to be better and try to win more often. Everybody cares for this team and we just need to work harder to achieve what we want to achieve," he said.

"Every game is important for us. The fans want to see us win each and every game, which is why they always turn up in their tens of thousands, home and away. Things have improved in the dressing room now and we are happy.

"It's not just a Cup game [against Watford]; we want to win for the fans, so we will be prepared for that. We always put in our head that we have to win against the teams who are fighting in the relegation battle with us,"

He added: "We work really hard on those; we try to win every grease we put in a great effort against Chelsea, but in this game, it was very important for the team.

"We worked really hard, Cardiff couldn't create any chances, we were defensively good and we attacked very well, too.

"It was a fantastic win for the team against Cardiff and we played very well. A clean sheet was very important for the team, too.

"I believe we shouldn't be down at the bottom because, if you watched our games, we play well, we create chances, and then sometimes this season we have been unlucky in most of the games but we want to win against Watford and progress."

Atsu has made 17 appearances in all competitions this season. He is expected to start against Watford.