Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez doesn't seem to be a happy man after his side suffered their third straight defeat on Saturday with a 2-1 loss at Watford. Benitez had some strong words for his team's performance at Vicarage Road as they prepare for a tough encounter against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley on Wednesday night, and one player who will be feeling the pressure to perform is defender Javier Manquillo.
Speaking in a press conference ahead of the match on Wednesday (via the Football Insider), Benitez came down hard on the commitment of the players to do what is expected of them.
"The players are professionals and they know how I wanted them to approach the game. And they did exactly the opposite," said Benitez who has become a hero among Newcastle fans for bringing them back into the Premier League.
Newcastle have had an impressive season in the Premier League and are currently in 10th position. But two difficult ties against Spurs and then Chelsea at home on Sunday could see them finish the season with five losses in a row; something that won't please Benitez at all.
Spurs and Chelsea on the other hand have it all to play for as they battle it out for a top four finish and both can't afford to drop points as the season draws to a close.
Manquillo will have heard Benitez's message loud and clear - that is, if he has any intention of staying with the Magpies. The 24-year-old hasn't been a regular starter for Newcastle of late and might be looking for a move away from St James' Park.
Manquillo signed for Newcastle from Atletico Madrid for a fee of £4.5m last summer on a three year deal. After getting off to a strong start in Newcastle colours, Manquillo's form started to dip and he suffered the consequences by being demoted to the bench.
With only two games remaining in the season, he will desperate to redeem himself and save his career at Newcastle. Unfortunately for him, he may not get that opportunity.