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Benitez tells players to forget about revenge against Wolves

Matt Doherty headed Wanderers to a controversial victory at St James' Park in December.
By Damian Spellman, | 7d

Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez has told his players to forget about revenge as they attempt to edge themselves closer to Premier League survival at Wolves on Monday evening.

The Magpies lost 2-1 to Nuno Espirito Santo's men in controversial circumstances at St James' Park on December 9 with Matt Doherty's late header securing the points as Ayoze Perez lay prone in the opposition penalty area after being caught by Willy Boly's flying elbow.

Benitez, who had earlier seen full-back DeAndre Yedlin harshly sent off for a professional foul, was incensed on the final whistle but has insisted his team must forget that sense of injustice this weekend.

He said: "We knew after the game watching the replays that everything was wrong and we didn't deserve to lose the game, but we cannot change that.

"We have to concentrate now on this one. It's an opportunity for us because every game for us is a final, so this is the first one and we have to play all the finals with everybody concentrated and focused on that."

The Magpies sit in 15th place in the table, two points above the relegation zone and knowing the chasing pack could have closed significantly by the time they run out at Molineux.

Wolves, who emerged from the Sky Bet Championship the season after Newcastle made the same journey, have prospered in the top flight and headed into the weekend sitting seventh and with 38 points to their name.

That has come as no surprise to Benitez, who has looked on enviously as Espirito Santo has been able to invest heavily in his squad, although he could hand record signing Miguel Almiron a debut after owner Mike Ashley finally loosened the purse strings last month.

Benitez said: "They are doing well. They have a good manager, they have very good players.

"We talk about the newly-promoted teams, but they have spent more than £100million, some of them, so it's not the same as when you have another promoted team, for example like Huddersfield, who spent some money, but still there's a big difference.

"If you see the players that they have, they have champions of Europe, they have players who play at international level.

"They are a good team doing really well."



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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City27212474205465
2Liverpool26205159154465
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs26200654252960
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd26156552351751
5Arsenal26155653371650
6Chelsea26155645291650
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2611693433139
8Watford2610793434037
9Everton2796123639-333
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2696113239-733
11Bournemouth26103133747-1033
12Leicester CityLeicester2695123134-332
13Crystal Palace2676132734-727
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2676132839-1127
15Burnley2676132947-1827
16Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2667132234-1225
17Cardiff CityCardiff2674152447-2325
18Southampton2659122844-1624
19Fulham2645172558-3317
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2625191448-3411
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