Dean Smith says he is disappointed with his Aston Villa’s 1-1 draw at Newcastle, but admitted his side didn’t deserve to win anyway.
Villa thought they had won the game when a Ciaran Clark own goal nudged them ahead in the 86th minute. The three points would have seen them go above Liverpool and into eight in the table.
However, a 94th minute equaliser from Magpies captain Jamaal Lascelles meant the points were shared in the end.
That means Villa stay in ninth, although they do still have a game in hand on the champions.
But while Smith insisted the Villains should have held on, he also accepted they didn’t do enough to win it.
“When you’re a goal up with four minutes to go then you’re disappointed, naturally,” he said.
“We didn’t deserve to win the game over 94 or 95 minutes. I thought it certainly was not a game for the purists. A bit of an ugly game. Not many completed passes and not many clear-cut chances. They probably had the better ones in all honesty.
“But, when you score a goal in the 90th minute like we did, you should go and see it out. But to be fair to the boys, I can’t be too hard on them for most of the season.”
Smith rues wasted chances
After taking the lead, Villa also had a number of chances to double their advantage as Newcastle desperately searched for a leveler.
But as was typical of the game, and Villa in general lately, they weren’t ruthless in front of goal.
That wasn’t lost on Smith, who said post-match: “We could have actually gone and got a goal to make it 2-0 with the counter-attacking opportunities we had.
“Once we scored they threw everything forward and left gaps, and we didn’t make the most of them opportunities and allowed them to stick the ball into the box and Lascelles has got onto the end of one.”
Goal scoring has become somewhat of an issue for Villa in recent months. They haven’t scored more than once in a game since January, and none of their players have found the net in the last three matches.
Anwar El Ghazi was the last to do so when he hit the winner against Leeds on 27th February.