Rafa Benitez will want to eliminate one trait Newcastle have shown at the start of this season

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez

Three games and three goals conceded just on half-time. It's not a trait the Newcastle boss will want to have.

Reading's Garath McCleary scores their first goal from the penalty spotReading's Garath McCleary scores their first goal from the penalty spot

Newcastle United might have finally got off the mark in their quest to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking thanks to a 4-1 win over Reading, but there was a trait within that game that will not please manager Rafa Benitez that also featured in their opening two games.

In all three of their games so far, Newcastle have conceded just on the stroke of half-time. Matt Smith got the winning goal for Fulham in their opening-day encounter, Nakhi Wells gave Huddersfield a half-time lead at the weekend, while Gareth McCleary was given the opportunity to equalise from the penalty spot on the stroke of the break for Reading following Ciaran Clark's rash challenge on John Swift. 

Newcastle United manager Rafael BenitezNewcastle United manager Rafael Benitez

In two of the games so far they have proved costly. Goals before half-time signal a lack of concentration when Newcastle may need some smarter play to get them to the interval unscathed. Having conceded three goals from three games when the break has been approaching, Benitez will not want this to become a trend throughout the season, and want his side to manage the games better. 

Benitez's sides in the past have been ones that have been able to concentrate and remain solid at the back and manage certain periods of the game well, including getting to half-time without conceding in the spell immediately before it. 

Fulham's Matt Smith scores their first goalFulham's Matt Smith scores their first goal

Part of the reason for his side not being able to execute that so far may be down to players still gelling. Newcastle have had an incredibly busy summer on the transfer front and teething problems won't be out of the ordinary. 

Maybe it is a case of getting the side more settled, but Benitez will want to cut out leaking goals before half-time sooner rather than later. 

Huddersfield Town's Nahki Wells celebrates scoring their first goal with teammatesHuddersfield Town's Nahki Wells celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates

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