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This Is What Rafa Said In His First nufcTV Interview

7:57 am, Saturday, March 12th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 33 Comments

Rafa Benitez spoke to nufcTV after his training session finished yesterday – and every fan who has a subscription to nufcTV should see this interview.

In fact the club should issue the video of the interview for all fans to see.

Rafa comes across as very genuine and said he wanted to come to Newcastle with one of the major reasons for coming were the fans – because he knows all about the Newcastle fans from when he visited St. James´ Park with Liverpool.

He was all business during this interview and he seems to have already thought things through on what is required for Newcastle to avoid relegation this season.

rafa benitez nufcTV

Rafa Benitez – first nufcTV interview

He asked the whole City and the fans to stick together and support the team in the final 10 games of the season – that was a recurring theme in the interview – he wants everybody associated with Newcastle behind the team until the very last game of the season.

Rafa said that he knows  Steve McClaren well and that he was sorry he was fired and he knows what that´s like – he wished Steve all the best for the future and said these things happen.

He talked about the three coaches he had brough in – Fabio Pecchia, Francisco de Míguel Moreno and Antonio Gomez Perez – and gave a short history of each of them and had very good, but different things to say about each one of them.

The thing he stressed about them was they are all very hard workers.

Rafa said he had good reports about both Ian Cathro and Simon Stone and that he has already talked to them about the players at the club.

The first thing was that we have to stay in the Premier League and if we can do that we will have a great future, but we have to take one game at a time.

He wants to do things now and in the future so that the potential of the club will grow and keep growing.

Rafa said he has confidence that Newcastle can avoid the drop, but we must all concentrate and have the support of everybody – we will try to win every game, but that we will have to keep going for all 10 games,  whatever happens.

He saw similarities at Newcastle with two of his former clubs – Valencia and Liverpool – and the fans there are also working class and very passionate – Rafa said he got great support at those two clubs from the fans.

He told the players yesterday they have always to give everything and think in a positive way – they have to concentrate on their jobs.

He doesn´t want them to dwell on the past in any way, but just think about the next game – do your best in the game and in every training session too.

The 55 year-old said it was a difficult situation Newcastle are in at the moment and there´s not much time before the Leicester City game, but that the lads trained well yesterday and Rafa was pleased with that – very pleased with that.

Rafa said he has to decide which players will be available for each game and he said that every player will have a part to play before the end of the season.

He said yes – he was a little surprised Newcastle were so low in the table – because he knows we have some good players from watching some of the Newcastle games this season.

Rafa said we will try our best to do well and give the players confidence, but they must give their all.

He said he was a manager and at the same time a coach,  so he likes to train with ¨my players” – to motivate them and give them instructions.

He said Leicester City Claudio Ranieri was his friend and he had met him in Italy – and that hopefully we can win the game on Monday night.

He stressed again near the end that one of the key reasons he came to Newcastle was that he knows all about the Geordie fans and he said he was sure they will be supporting the team – they know we have only 10 games left.

If he makes a mistake during a game or one of his players makes a mistake he said we have to move on and keep concentrating.

Benitez ended the interview – which we thought was terrific and almost a motivational type speech to both his players and the fans by saying the Newcastle fans can make a big difference.

One last thing – as some fans have already mentioned – it´s now double jeopardy.

If we are relegated not only will we be a Championship club next season and fans around the world will not even be able to see the games – but we will also lose Rafa Benitez – one of the best coaches in Europe.

That would be very hard to take.

If we stay up it’s clear from the interview that Rafa wants to take the club back to being successful – and make us great again – and that he has both the skills and wherewithal to do that.

So at the moment, I´m not sure whether to laugh or cry.


Tags: Coaching · Management · Newcastle News · Other News · Poll · Premier League

33 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tsunki // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:04 AM

    From previous article-

    Mag52 – I posted something like that yesterday but had the likes of Jib and mattynufc calling me out for being so ‘usual suspect’.

    it’s great to see that finally a sensible appointment has been made, which shows that someone has decided they haven’t a clue and admit it. Good for them. But while we are all pleased about it, it’s only right to wait and see how it all pans out, this is Ashleys nufc, after all, and we still have Charnley at the helm. I’m hoping they’ve placed themselves in an irretrievably good position. But it is entirely possible we will still go down, Rafa will decline the option to manage us in the championship, and we will get Neil Warnock. We just need to be philosophical about it if it does happen.

    Having said that I am miles more optimistic about our chances now. By some distance.

  • 2 sing in the corner // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:04 AM

    Off in to work,Spring in the step, feel good factor still carrying me along. Hoping Man City do their duty, tonk Norwich at lunch time to give us another little boost.

  • 3 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:06 AM

    Should of heard the Mackems last night on BBC Newcastle Total Sport could not talk about their team – all about the TOON and how poor we are how easy it is going to be to beat us – magnificent 7 and all that s**t.
    Christ you think they were top of the league! and how good their players are. One even sdaid that he would take no-one from the TOON because their players are better

    Sadly I think we will still go down but we will make a fight of it.

    I just think it is two games to late should of gone after the Chelsea game but would we of gone for Benitez then

    And we sadly lack a genuine golascorer

    And our defence is very poor without MBemba – get dragged all over the place.

    BUT – If we go down, I hope Benitez stays and builds ‘his’ team that will come straight back up and be comfortably safe first season.

    Because I think we could be going somewhere with Benitez as long as we keep him and Ashley loosens the purse strings

  • 4 hibbitt // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:10 AM

    IF we go down so be it but at lest we will go down fighting not just waiting for it to happen we now have a chance

  • 5 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:12 AM

    “Ha ha, daft Geordies appointing a manager that’s never been within ten points of a relegation battle lol lol”
    They’re shite ing themselves and know they are so much more likely to go down, ha ha taking the pis$ out of appointing one of the worlds best managers.

  • 6 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:14 AM

    Wtf do you know about footy all you’ve ever done is whined that we need a top manager!!@

  • 7 hibbitt // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:15 AM

    Jail for Ashley
    what else have the poor sods got …

  • 8 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:22 AM

    Benitez has been relegated before, and has was also sacked from his first top flight job after 2 wins in 23 when they were bottom. Still, they were 2 of his first 3 jobs, and before relegation he had achieved promotion and kept them up one season. He took a year off and basically studied, travelled watched different coaches and came back better and stronger. Impossible to call him a failure since his year off.

    The guy is a student of the game, and it will be interesting to see him at work. I think he is probably the most tactically astute manager we have had since I started supporting mid to late 80’s.

    Looking forward to the Leicester game, he won’t have had much time to make vast improvements, but the set up and organisation will be telling for moving forwards.

  • 9 martoon // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:22 AM

    As I keep saying we’ve only got to get 2 more points than the makems in the remaining games to stay up which I think is quite possible with Rafa at the helm 🙂

  • 10 Magtoonpie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:23 AM

    You can watch his interview on Rafa’s website I hope we left Rafa enough games. Excited to see what will be of next season if we make it.

  • 11 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:26 AM

    We have a great chance of staying up. We have by far the best run in. 4 wins against the rest of the bottom 5 and we are laughing. I don’t think it will be that hard for Rafa to get a tune out of some of the underperforming players, and he is also a big enough name and strong enough manager to deal with any of the egos that are in the dressing room and need knocking down a peg or two/dropping.

  • 12 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:26 AM

    Manx, it doesn’t matter if the players were told about the training session on the morning or whenever, it’s the fact that Benitez went straight off to the to the training ground after signing and had them training.regardless. Great stuff.

    Jail, yes, a qualified manager with relevant experience. Whether he succeeds or doesn’t succeed doesn’t matter, it’s the fact that he is the type of decorated manager that we should be looking at.

    Brilliant, what boost this has given everyone.

    We don’t need ‘a shouting guy’ or relegation battler to toughen up the players and expect that to be what works – Souness style. We need someone to inspire them and organise them correctly with a winning attitude, goal orientations, and effective tactics – To simply play football well as a team in the quickest possible time

  • 13 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:28 AM

    I am excited about this, we(fans) so much deserve an appointment like this.

  • 14 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:31 AM

    Lilo, it’s his dedication to improve and study the game, brilliant.

    People know Mike Tyson as a being a devastating knockout puncher but he also was a real student of boxing and used to watch many, many historical bouts, and they undoubtedly improved his mentality and approach leading up to fights.

    Again, super pleased that Cathro has been kept on. It says a lot.

  • 15 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:32 AM

    Interesting to see Smith and Cathro both kept on. I’d say that almost confirms that neither were Macca’s picks. Benitez will probably know a fair bit about Cathro given the Valencia links. Also looking forward to who else comes in with him. Maybe a 4th knew fitness coach in three years will help ease our injury issues!

  • 16 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:34 AM

    Have you watched his first interview on

  • 17 Rotonda heights // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:35 AM

    it’s just a shame rafa isn’t bringing his own usual goalkeeping coach in as he is meant to be the dogs.

    Really really hope Rafa has got full control and doesn’t have to go cap in hand to the frankly appalling Charnley and Carr, both of whom will hopefully be gone in the summer, along with Beardo and Watson, as we need a real root and branch job at all levels.

  • 18 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:35 AM

    Yup. We do. We at the very least should be able to watch our team, club and have a feeling of pride. Rafa’s appointment, hopefully, will go some way to doing that. Maybe a summer restructuring upstairs will go even further.

    Yeah, it was almost like after his first three jobs where he struggled he realised he needed to study and learn more to improve and better himself. It clearly worked.

  • 19 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:36 AM

    It’ll be interesting to see who he picks to play. Will it be a core of a regular team and a few additions in from the cold, or will it as per how they train for the next couple of days?

    I hope he can revitalise Siem. There is a player there waiting to do good things.

  • 20 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:37 AM

    Not yet. Will have a look now.

  • 21 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:39 AM

    So basically, the only conditions Mclaren lined out was that he had to have his loser mates with him, who will all be working for Northampton and Halifax next season

  • 22 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:39 AM

    Might take a while, internet is not playing nice at the minute over here….

  • 23 Rotonda heights // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:40 AM


    it was criminal not doing it during the 18 day break. perfect opportunity but charnley never known to move at speed

  • 24 Jail for Ashley // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:40 AM

    Pure class. Not an SD advert in sight either.

  • 25 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:42 AM

    Not only has Rafa got the respect of professionals, he also has it from the vast majority of our fans, and that is a huge form of unity for us to move forward and create a buzz of excitement for these last 10 games and beyond.


  • 26 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:42 AM

    Stupid thing is buffering again… Not sure about pure class…. Still a lot of Wonga logos….

  • 27 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:43 AM

    I think a deal would still not of been done had Ashley not flown in.
    think Charmless was reluctant to get rid of McClown

  • 28 beermonkey // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:45 AM


    morning i hope u have cleaned the carpet

  • 29 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:46 AM

    McClaren was on the board. Not sure entirely what the legalities there are, but I think Ashley was probably the only one legally able to dispense of McClaren. Charnley must have done the majority of the negotiations with Rafa’s agents/people. Not saying Charnley is redeemed, but I doubt he was a bystander in all this.

  • 30 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:47 AM

    Didn’t realise he had already bought his own staff in!

  • 31 Sir Braveheart // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:50 AM

    What the hell happened yesterday??

    Massive show of ambition by the club. I think it will only pay dividends if we can stay up though. If we survive then the summer will be an interesting one indeed.

    On the subject of staying up – I think we have it in us to do that, but that all relies on the Sunderland game. Win that and we leap frog them and are two points ahead (I’m assuming we don’t get a result against Leicester on Monday). After that we just have to match their results and it’s job done.


    Swansea and Crystal Palace are only 9 points ahead of us, and we have to play them both, at home too. If we beat Sunderland and Norwich and Swansea and Palace lose a couple of games, a win against them could potentially see us leap frog them too. This talk of three teams from four is a bit premature when there’s still games to be played between the bottom six teams.

    I think realistically we should be looking at wins against Sunderland, Norwich, Swansea, Palace and Villa. 15 points, takes us to 39 which should be enough. And those five teams are all beatable and wins there dent their hopes too.

    Of course a sympathy win from Liverpool on the last day to help their former manager out wouldn’t hurt 🙂

  • 32 Lilongwe Geordie // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:51 AM

    It is interesting that there are no SD logos in the background on the interview. Could he really have realised the error of his ways? Probably not….

  • 33 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 12, 2016 at 8:52 AM

    What a signing lads…! I literally could not sleep last night…Dreaming of how Rafa does his magic.

    I cannot tell you how important this is…only concern like many of you say is the fact that its soooooo late. I still believe its very doable…

    IF I have a look at the games there 4 are def winnable. and a few draws that surely should help us.

    I always LOVED Benitez…. You have to realise this the pressure he was on whilst at Chelski and he performed admirably I might say.

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