Following his first league start for loan club Newcastle United, Inter owned wing back Valentino Lazaro has reflected on how he thinks he and the team fared in their 4-0 loss to Arsenal at St James’ Park over the weekend.
The Austrian national team defender joined the Premier League club in a loan for the remainder of this season during the recent January transfer window. As part of the deal, Newcastle United have an option to turn his stay with the club into a permanent one for a fee of around €20 million.
The 23-year-old played all barring the final 15 minutes of the game and whilst he did show some promising signs during his performance, he struggled massively when defending.
Lazaro shared his delight with his performance in the first half but admitted that the wheels would fall off in the second half after Arsenal scored two goals in quick succession early on in the half.
“First half, I felt very good and confident on the pitch. I had a lot of ways forward, and also with the set-pieces. We had some chances to score,” he said following the match, as quoted by The Shields Gazzette.
“For my first start, I was really happy with the first half. Second half, after those two quick goals, we fell apart. Unfortunately, for the second goal, he gets the ball between me feet, and that was very unlucky.
“Unfortunately, after that, the whole team fell apart. We have to work on that, to bounce back from those mentally tough situations.”
He then went on to discuss how he is finding his ongoing transformation from winger to wing back.
“It’s a position I’ve played over the last maybe two years. I’m adjusting to that. You can see that I’m a winger, and my strengths are in attack. I’m trying to learn more and more defensively. I’m trying to learn more there. With team-mates like this who help me out, it’s a lot easier.”