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Carabao Cup

Carabao Cup Semi-Final: What the managers said after the first legs

What Howe, Jones, Ten Hag and Cooper said following the Semi-Final first-leg ties.

26 January 2023

After the first legs of the Carabao Cup Semi-Finals came to a close, here's what each manager said after their respective games.

Eddie Howe, Newcastle United manager:
"A tough game. Both sides had their moments and had chances to win the game but we know it’s only half-time and there’s a long way to go.
"It has been a good day but there’s still a long way to go in the tie.
"We weren’t clinical until Joelinton's goal.
"I can’t be critical in any way though as it has been a good day for us. "We defended well. Nick (Pope) made some big saves again. Especially that one against Che Adams, it was a big moment in the match and he stood up tall for us, like he has all season. He has been outstanding for us this year, the defence has played very well in front of him, but when called upon, he has delivered for us.
"I’m pleased to win, that was our aim, but we know 1-0 is delicate. Nothing is decided."

Nathan Jones, Southampton manager:
"The level of performance I thought was really good. It was a really entertaining game. They came here to try and win, we wanted to win.
"This is a big, strong powerful well-drilled side and I thought we competed with that. In the first half we didn't quite get the press right, the second half I thought we were excellent.
"Their goal came against the run of play and we’d had one or two glorious chances before that.
"To concede in the manner we did - they missed a good chance over the bar just before - but we should have never conceded that goal. I’m happy with the level of performance that we are showing, but we need to eradicate the silly mistakes and be a bit more clinical."
Erik Ten Hag, Manchester United manager:
"I'm happy, happy with the performance. I think over 90 minutes we controlled the game and there was one moment which could have changed the game.
"That is what we have to be aware of, that is where we have to improve. But I think overall it was a good performance from our first team and now the first leg is done, with still one leg to go.
"I said at half-time I was not happy with the part of the game in the first half after they [Forest] changed their system. And we have to avoid that. We have to stay calm, pass the ball around not too quickly for the final pass and maybe sometimes use some extra passing and then you can hurt opponents, especially when you are up in an away game. Control the game better, dictate the game.
"But yes, we have to play one game (to be in the Final). We have to do the same, we have to invest, we have to prepare, we have to make a good gameplan and the players have to be focused."

Steve Cooper, Nottingham Forest manager: 
“We’re really disappointed with the scoreline. The last thing you want to do is go to Old Trafford with the result we got."
“The manner of the goals were disappointing, from the timing of them to how they have gone about them. Rashford is one of the most in-form players in the country at the moment, so for us to allow him to do what he did is disappointing.
“The second goal, we came off the game-plan and the timing of it. To be 2-0 down, I still would have been saying a lot of the same things, but you two goals down, you never know. To concede late on is disappointing, and in the way we did.
 “I won’t lose sight of the fact we did alright at times in the first half and steadied the ship in the second half. But the naivety and the timing around the goals has made it incredibly tough for the second leg."

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