McClaren rues ‘self-inflicted goals’

McClaren has been linked with Austin but has not made an approach

Newcastle boss Steve McClaren blamed defensive errors and praised Chelsea’s clinical finishing after his side’s 5-1 defeat at Stamford Bridge.

Pedro scored twice and Diego Costa, Willian and Bertrand Traore were also on target as the Blues won their first home league game under Guus Hiddink.

Chelsea were 3-0 up after just 16 minutes and McClaren conceded it was difficult to come back from such a woeful start.

He said: “Last week we won the game in the first 20 minutes, this week we lost it in the first 20 minutes.

“The majority of the goals and opportunities were self-inflicted and Chelsea worked it perfectly in the fact that you could see they wanted the game won by half time.

It’s very difficult, 3-0 down after 15 minutes, to come back from that. But that’s what can happen when you come here.”

Former QPR coach McClaren said Chelsea had exposed his side’s makeshift defence but hoped the 18-day gap before their next fixture would ease their injury crisis.

He added: “It’s Steven Taylor’s second game in six or seven months, Rolando Aarons is a winger playing at left-back, so we’ve had defensive problems. We hope that three or four will come back in the next 18-day period.

“It’s a good opportunity to regroup, get organised, stay calm and don’t let this derail us.”