Newcastle 1 Benfica 1: It was a bridge too far, admits Shola Ameobi

Newcastle 1 Benfica 1: Shola Ameobi admits that the task of overturning a two-goal deficit was "a bridge too far" for the Magpies

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Shola Ameobi admitted that the task of overturning a two-goal deficit against Benfica was “a bridge too far” after Newcastle were knocked out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage.

Trailing 3-1 from the first leg in Portugal last week, Papiss Cisse’s 71st-minute header gave the Magpies hope of snatching the 2-0 win the Magpies were after.

But Eduardo Salvio’s late goal booked Benfica’s place in the last four and wrapped up a 4-2 aggregate victory for the visitors at St James’ Park.

“Two goals is a lot to come back from, but tonight we gave it a good go,” said Ameobi.

“We knew with our home fans we had a chance, and the first goal gave us a lift. Papiss scored two but was offside, that’s the luck off the draw.

“Two goals was a bridge too far. I don’t think we showed them too much respect, we knew they were a good side, Portuguese champions, so we had to be cautious early on as a goal would have killed the game.

“We see with the game tonight it meant a lot to us, we have given everything we have in this competition.”

Ameobi added: “We will take a lot out of it, experience and help us moving forward. Making the quarter-finals is a good achievement.”

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