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Why Rafa Is Worth Every Penny Of His Massive Wages

1:52 pm, Sunday, March 13th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 185 Comments

It’s been reported that Rafa Benitez signed a contract that could keep him at the club through the end of June, 2019 and his annual wages are as high as £6M a year and he stood to get a bonus of £3M if he’s able to keep Newcastle in the Premier league.

If he’s not able to do that it’s likely he will activate the release clause in his contract at the end of the season and leave the club.


So that’s about £21M Newcastle will invest in the new manager over the next three years if we survive relegation this season.

And our reading of that is – he’s worth every penny.


Rafael Benitez with his wife Moutse
In the grounds of their home in Caldy on the Wirral

First of all it’s a massive ask for Rafa to keep us in the Premier League after Charnley allowed Steve McClaren to remain in the job for nine months as he took us closer and closer to relegation.

Rafa has only 10 games left and we are second bottom of the league and still 9 points behind 5th bottom Swansea although we now have two games in hand.

But if he does save us, that guarantees Newcastle at least £150M in May next year for still being in the Premier League.

When you take into account some parachute payments from the PL for relegation and payment from the Championship that’s still well over £100M Newcastle will lose next season alone if we are relegated.

So the bonus is about 3% of the money we will lose if relegated – a very good deal for Newcastle United.

And his yearly wages of £6M a year are cheap at the price too.

In this last year of the current three year deal PL clubs get anywhere from £60 to £100M a year with Newcastle getting close to £80M a year.

That will increase by at least 70% next season with the new £5.1B TV rights deal, so let’s say clubs will get anywhere from £120M to £170M – if Newcastle finish mid table that’s about £155M.

And assume just for estimating purposes that each position higher in the league table next season is worth about (170-120/20) – £2.5M.

If Rafa can get us one place higher in the league that’s an extra £2.5M in the Newcastle coffers.

So how many places higher in the league can he get us compared to a lesser coach (like Steve McClaren?) – once you have that number multiply it by 2.5 and that’s the extra money that Rafa can bring in for Newcastle in £M – because he’s such a top class manager.

Notice the almost polar opposite is true for McClaren, who has lost Newcastle money this season and it could become a catastrophic loss if we get relegated.

So it was a very poor business decision by Lee Charnley last June to hire McClaren – it could cost the club big time.

The other thing is that we already have too many high paid stars who don’t produce – and there’s a few of them who certainly haven’t produced this season.

A good coach gets the best out of the players he has – and a poor coach doesn’t.

So if Rafa can get the very best out of our players their wages now become worth it to the club – and that’s more reason Rafa deserves big wages as Newcastle’s investment will get a payback also from the players.

We wont even mention that Rafa in the next three years could get us back into Europe and there is extra money the club gets from that – a massive amount if it’s the Champions League.

We’ve always thought the manager is the most important person at a club because he is in charge of all the players and  he has the most responsibility.

That at least is how it works in the outside business world that people with increasing responsibilities get higher compensation.

And if Rafa is still the manager at the end of May the season tickets will be sold out rather quickly for next season at Newcastle – no struggles to sell the season tickets with Rafa Benitez in charge.

We have a feeling that Benitez, Ashley and Charnley have already talked about some of the things they will do in the summer, if we survive relegation.

One of those will be to build the world-class training facilities at Benton that have been held in abeyance for over a year now because of the threat of relegation – mainly due to the very poor choices of John Carver and Steve McClaren as our most recent head coaches.

So once the fans hear about what Rafa’s plans are – including maybe which players he wants – and also just as important which of the current lot he doesn’t want – we expect season tickets to sell like hot cakes.

The truth is that Benitez has electrified the Newcastle fans in the short two days he’s been on board.

One thing that’s abundantly clear is the biggest star in the Newcastle dressing room will be Rafa himself and not any of our players – unless we bring in Ronaldo or Messi for next season.

But maybe they are getting a bit too old at 31 and 28 respectively?


Comments welcome.

Tags: Coaching · Financial Fair Play · Financials · Management · Newcastle News · Prayer · Premier League

185 responses so far ↓

  • 1 JackButler // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:00 PM

    You get what you pay for, it’s as simple as that, Pardew and McClaren were simply greatly to be offered a job and chance to get back into the big time, the result is that we got two yes men. Now however, we have a man that is regarded so highly, he can pick and choose where he works so he can command a massive wage

  • 2 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:01 PM

    never really interests me what managers/coaches earn as..
    1)nowt to do with me
    2)its probably speculation to try and highlight how much the club willing to spend or willing to waste depending on whos writing the article.

  • 3 bladeuser // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:02 PM

    RAFA will not take us down those gutless players will

  • 4 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:03 PM

    is that you softening a bit,bladeuser?lol

  • 5 Oleg G // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:05 PM

    It is important to add that getting a world class manager like Benitez (or Klopp, or any other top 5 earning managers in the PL), is like getting a bit above average player for 15M with a salary of 40K (and add to that some signing bonus of 1M).

    But while paying that for a player, you get only an ok player, with potential, you can get a first class manager. The man responsible for the team, the training, the line up, the tactics and a lot of other things.

  • 6 JackButler // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:08 PM

    Arsenals Gabriel seems intent on breaking someone’s leg today

  • 7 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:09 PM


    When was the last time you was in a good mood.

  • 8 JackButler // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:13 PM


    Those gutless players will be checked by Raffa, he won’t take any sh@t off them as they will know that they are playing for their futures and let’s be honest there are more than a few that are stealing a wage here and if they were to leave it would be a backward step for them.

    The appointment of a world class manager has completely changed the perspective at the club and should be seen by everyone concerned

  • 9 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:18 PM

    PSG winning 7-0!

  • 10 AncientC // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:19 PM

    Still another half an hour to play, Ron. Double figures on the cards for PSG.

  • 11 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:24 PM

    When I watch Leicester and I see how Kante performs every week this is how I imagined Sissoko should be all over the pitch with energy and constantly hounding opponents not sulking because he thinks he is too good to play anywhere but as a no 10 !

    If Kante was asked to play right wing for example I cant see him sulking and not putting 100% in!

    Who knows now the fact we have a champions league quality manager we may get commitment from players like Sissoko

  • 12 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:27 PM

    hopes so mate then we might have a full time player on our hands…instead of just now and then.

  • 13 In Rafa We Trust // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:28 PM

    How much more likely are players like Lacazette to come now?? Much more

  • 14 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:33 PM


    8-0 now & Troyes down to ten men.

  • 15 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:38 PM

    if we stop up and spend big then most players will listen to what he and the club has to offer….i would hope so anyway

  • 16 AncientC // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:38 PM

    Troyes had -38 goal difference before this game. Keeping it to below -50 would be something to aim for a I guess.

  • 17 Lindisfarne // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:39 PM

    Comparing the photos from training and the eleven players on, is it safe to assume Townsend, Obertan and Haidara are fit enough to play. Can not be sure Collo was taking a full part and will probably not be ready for Monday.

    Squad available (26 +2?):
    Goalkeepers: 21 ELLIOT 26 Darlow 41 Woodman
    Defenders: 2 COLOCCINI(?) 15 Lascelles 19 Haidara 22 JANMAAT 27 TAYLOR 42 Sterry
    Midfielders: 4 COLBACK 5 WIJNALDUM 7 SISSOKO 8 Anita 10 de Jong 11 Gouffran 12 SHELVEY 14 Obertan 16 Aarons 23 Saivet 25 TOWNSEND(?) 31 Marveaux 35 Gibson
    Forwards: 17 Pérez 28 Doumbia 29 Riviere 36 Toney 45 Mitrovic 47 Barlaser

    7 senior players (UPPERCASE) that are regular starters around which the other players will be fitted to create a defensive team. Who could the four additional players be?

    One striker definitely but maybe a false 10 could be used to boost the midfield. Two defenders unless Colback goes to fullback, which would open up a place for a midfielder. Of the remaining players Aarons, Perez and Lascelles deserve a start, whilst I would like to see the great skills of de Jong and Doumbia, IMO Saivet may be used to provide DM cover.

    Through watching past matches Rafa will know that we often give the ball away in the last third and the midfield gets caught out of position leaving the defence vulnerable. So will he persist with Sissoko and Wijnaldum trying to support the forwards, try to ensure they play defensively firstly, or replace one or both?

    I think this could be a good team but Rafa will be able to make a more direct judgment and if experience out ways enthusiasm and/or positional sense:


  • 18 ilovetoon8788 // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:43 PM

    how did people like STEVE BLACK got appointed by our club. he practically stole our wages.

  • 19 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:45 PM

    reputation gets you far once you have one….look at macca!

  • 20 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:46 PM

    Consolation corner for Troyes.

  • 21 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:47 PM

    And as I write that PSG score again.

  • 22 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:48 PM

    psg on a rampage then i assume!lol

  • 23 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:51 PM


    It finished 9-0!

  • 24 bladeuser // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:58 PM

    Going soft not me I will be back to my worst after the next two games although I hope I will have some praise worthy comments to make

  • 25 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 2:59 PM

    how stories can appear on websites already about lacazette may sign in the summer is a bit much,just read on news now..newcastle given hope of 25m euro striker mat sign???……wait to see if we survive,wait to see if rafa stays,if he wants him!….long way to go yet.
    this is’nt a pop at you by the way “in rafa we trust”….its just a little pop at sites just churning out useless articles.

  • 26 toon kk // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:00 PM

    Arsenal loosing to Watford 0-2 at the moment, great work ethic from Watford.

  • 27 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:00 PM


  • 28 Rafael Sinep // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:00 PM

    Colo is our new DM

  • 29 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:02 PM

    ron knee
    they just be happy it did’nt reach double figures!…must admit at times this season….so have i!!lol

  • 30 Shadow_Shearer // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:03 PM

    Problem with Steve mcclaren was he didn’t change anything ever. He played the same things over & over. Same team selection, only replacing injuried. Same tactics, formations. U could guess the line up before it was announce.
    Same possession game that didn’t work, same short passing football that didn’t come past the half way line, especially against Chelsea. Even when we did create anything there was no end product, maybe the odd couple of chances made a game, & he would say if he play like that every week, we will be fine.
    Unfortunately our team can’t adjust to that style of play, espically next 10 games, rafa will need to get us to play more defensive/otherdox style, which not all of us will want to see long term, but it will suit us better

  • 31 Rafael Sinep // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:04 PM


  • 32 AncientC // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:06 PM

    There is no way Rafa is on £6 million a season, that is more than he got at Real Madrid. He was reportedly on 3.5 million Euros at Napoli, I would surmise that would be closer to his annual salary.

    According to this website, he earns £4.5 million per season, making him the 8th highest paid manager in the world.

  • 33 AncientC // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:11 PM

    Rafa is now the 8th highest paid manager in the world according to [this]( website.

  • 34 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:18 PM

    there must a decent feeling of optimism, coz even bladeuser is not his scrooge like self!!lol

  • 35 Lindisfarne // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:26 PM

    What a goal:

  • 36 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:29 PM

    When you look at how Watford have done this season having a Spanish manager who is pragmatic and knows what he wants I think it can work for us our team always looks like it needs structure but what our team has that Watford dont really have compared to us is pace Sissoko , Perez , Townsend, Wijnaldum and Doumbia are pretty rapid and should be used in a counter attacking capacity with direct passing rather than always trying to keep possession and then doing nothing with the ball for ages !!

  • 37 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:33 PM

    to put in the words of a certain true geordie….that was a thunder cnut!……bloody hell that was travelling what a strike!!

  • 38 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:36 PM

    Not looking good
    If Watford get to the final then I fear we’ll have to be 4 points ahead of the Mackems before the last game of the season.

    As i cannot see us getting anything against the spuds at home and Watford could put out a weakened team last game of the season against the Mackems

  • 39 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:43 PM

    its a little worrying that maybe the case,but just been looking at palaces and swanseas run in it might not be 2 from 3… palace especially looks hard.

  • 40 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:45 PM

    swansea should pretty much be safe by the end of next weekend as they have villa but palace are having a horrible run.

  • 41 Lindisfarne // Mar 13, 2016 at 3:49 PM

    Glad to see the pundits have as little idea as us about which players and formation we are likely to go with against a well drilled Leicester, playing 442 at #1.

  • 42 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:19 PM

    Not that it is particularly important – but – Rafa’s wife’s name is MONTSE.
    Short for Montserrat

  • 43 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:36 PM

    With chelski being knocked out on saturday and arsenal getting knocked out today, pardue’s crystal palace could give us toon fans a serious embarrassment.

    A game against watford and he’s got a great chance of FA cup final.

    He’s doing his eruopa league newcastle season only this cup is FA cup and the reason he’s doing it now is because he’ll be sure to get sacked during his first relegation battle early on in a season.

    this year’s bottom 5

  • 44 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:43 PM

    I can’t wait for McClaren to start at Boro so we can all talk about him 😀

  • 45 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:44 PM

    I saw a poll on the last page asking what people thought would happen at leicester and was a bit suprised 30% win and 29% draw.

    Think we’re getting ahead of ourselves. We’ve now got a great manager but even he’ll not have the expectation of getting a victory. A loss would be what most expect if it were an away gam to Arsenal, spurs or man city and leicester city aren’t much different themselves this season.

  • 46 Laurent Robert 32 // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:45 PM

    It’ll certainly be interesting seeing Rafa’s team selection. It might be that he picks them just on the three day’s training (maybe prompting the treatment players to join in) or maybe have it similar to what has usually been playing, bar the odd change, or a bit of both.

    Kane just scored. Good goal.

  • 47 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:46 PM

    Will he even get another appointment?

  • 48 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:46 PM

    Will he even get another appointment?

  • 49 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:47 PM

    29% lose*

  • 50 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:52 PM

    has boro’s boss quit…thought he thru a strop thats all?

  • 51 hibbitt // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:52 PM


    those sheep as you put it are one of the reasons he came here ……….dickhead

  • 52 hibbitt // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:56 PM


    gone mate…….. guess who’s in for the job

  • 53 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:57 PM

    toon king
    think its more hope then actual belief,think thats all it is ….although leicester have wobbled a little of late and a the “new manager” scenario…i personally still think we’ll get beat but im a lot more optimistic of maybe getting something then i ever was under macca…..but you never know.

  • 54 hibbitt // Mar 13, 2016 at 4:59 PM


    there’s a very good chance he had lunch with gibson on friday………….. make of that what you like

  • 55 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:00 PM

    bloody hell that slipped under my radar!….pardews arse will be twitching then….may well of been orchestrated so he can go else where??

  • 56 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:07 PM

    Since big mouth Downing returned in the Summer things have been strained.

  • 57 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:09 PM

    so what happened with karanka then?…thought he just had a strop coz they had a couple of dodgy results?….bloody good job he was’nt at newcastle this season!!

  • 58 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:12 PM

    Downing “See me – I’ve played for West Ham Villa and Liverpool me”

  • 59 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:14 PM

    it would be nastily ironic if we go down and boro came up with macca in charge!

  • 60 Rotonda heights // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:16 PM


    if you think eliot has been dodgy of late i don’t think darlow is the man to replace him as he looked nervous as a kitten last time he played.



    janmatt lascelles MBemba? MBabu

    Sissoko Shelvey Saviet

    Perez Wijni Aarons / Townsend?

  • 61 toon kk // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:19 PM

    Apparently Karanka has had a bit of a bust up with Boro’s board due to recent results and not playing their new 9 mil signing Rhoads enough.

  • 62 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:19 PM

    toon kk
    cheers mate

  • 63 Mashley u Batfastard & lambiarse u Cupid stunt // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:23 PM

    If Steven Taylor plays 2mo we will lose by a margin worst CB in the premier mbabu should play hopefully

  • 64 Rotonda heights // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:28 PM


    Montse as you probably know is a popular catalan name for girls.

  • 65 WWSBRD // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:33 PM

    The Lecister nose bleed will start soon so why not against us? They struggled against Norwich after all

    This Rafa coming in has rather affected my outlook

  • 66 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:36 PM

    Dimitri Payet signing of the season…what an offing goal that was…

  • 67 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:37 PM

    Why didn’t we sign payet, what a cracking goal that was against United.

  • 68 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:39 PM

    Interesting developments. I must admit that I never ever thought that we’d see the appointment of a genuinely world-class manager at our club.

    My reading of the situation is that it is a fantastic appointment that has been made a few months too late. Rafa does have the quality to keep this sorry sack of shits in the Premier League but will he have the sort of instant impact that we need to stay in the league? I’m not convinced.

    We face a top side in Leicester City tomorrow evening and I don’t think we’ll get anything from them. Then 6 days later Rafa’s first home game is against a Sunderland team on the up and up. If we lose both of the next two games, I’m sorry chaps, it doesn’t matter what Rafa does or doesn’t do – we’re relegated.

    Also, no one is highlighting the fact that Rafa has never had to deal with a relegation scrap ever in his managerial career.

    That being said, if he does manage to keep us in the PL he’ll be an excellent long-term appointment.

  • 69 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:39 PM

    Mashley u,
    That pairing relegayed us in 2009 but were excellent in 2012 and woeful again in thrir few games this season, hopefully Collo will remove his head from his ar$e and start turning up, hopefully Taylor is up to speed, he’s far from being the worst in the league.

  • 70 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:40 PM

    He’s too old welsh me old mucker!

  • 71 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:40 PM

    “Why didn’t we sign payet” because we signed Thauvin O_o

  • 72 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:43 PM

    Martial scores a typical Manure messy filthy goal….so sickening…

  • 73 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:44 PM

    Jail, I’m not a cockney.

  • 74 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:45 PM

    That was a quality finish by martial.

  • 75 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:45 PM

    Wow manure are so so so so so average…..its insane they are even in the upper half of the league…

  • 76 hibbitt // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:48 PM

    because mr carr signed us a world class winger from france Florian Thauvin

  • 77 Goofy // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:49 PM

    Owen is the most annoying manure biased commentator, hate the little sick note merc pr1kc.

  • 78 gorgonzola ( former Pecorino former to gorgonzola) // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:49 PM

    Foul by Scwein to enable the goal typical…lying cheating manure..

  • 79 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:52 PM

    He was promoted then relegated with Extremadura back in his early days, so he’s got quite a wide scope.
    I didn’t know that until I Googled it!

  • 80 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:55 PM


    probably right, being in such a happy mode what would be better than to get ourselves atleast a draw against leicester city

    4-3-3 is the last thing you want to use against leicester city. they’ve been a low possession and fast counter attacking football team all season and that’s the last thing needed when your team is very attacking with a bad back four. Each and every time we miss the chance you’ll get leicester city boot the ball long towards vardy and marez who’ll take advantage of the space created as they attempt to score a goal themselves.
    It might sound like a boring thing but 4-5-1 is most certainly what’s best if we are to get anything from leicester City

  • 81 Ron Knee // Mar 13, 2016 at 5:55 PM

    Forest looking for a new manager.

  • 82 JP...from The Rock // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:02 PM

    You’re jumping the gun big time Ed. Way too early yet. We still have to get the points and survive and only then will I even think of a top 10 finish let alone europe! Still a very very long way to go.

  • 83 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:02 PM


    I put everything on the derby. If we win then we’ll go into an international break feeling sky high in confidence leading up to a norwich game which could make another 3 points. meaning we can end the seaso wih the points thanks to 3 very winnable games against swansea, palace and villa without the desperation of points away to southampton, liverpool, spurs or city.

    If we don’t win the derby game then I can see everyone just packing their bags ready to leave..

  • 84 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:03 PM

    spurs city at home*

  • 85 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:07 PM


    Have to disagree. Leicester’s basic tactics have been sussed – which is why they are having more difficulties in getting results the last few games. Rafa is bright enough to give us a big chance of a point if not 3..
    I have a feeling we might just sneak it.
    We have no idea how the ‘bounce’ effect will work for us – but there will be one, unlike Tufty.
    The derby is more difficult to call but … even the last time out we ought to have got something. This time it’s home turf and an even higher degree of motivation.
    We need 3pts against the unwashed certainly, but a draw tomorrow will give the lads a bit of confidence. Rafa’s presence alone should make a difference.
    If we got two wins early on, out of the 10 remaining, then confidence plus Rafa’s tactics will keep us up. But it won’t be pretty.

  • 86 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:15 PM


    We’ve been saying that all season but they’ve proved us wrong time and time again. A Marez or Vardy injury is the only way I can see them tumble now. Wins are becoming vital now so teams need to make a threat at leicester some time and meaning leicester city themselves are getting the space they wanted for the long ball counter attacking football they play.

    Had teams knew how difficult it would be coming up against this style of play they’d started playing a tight defensive game already. Each week all they thought is they thought is this leicester city team can’t go on any longer meaning club itself still got the attacking football it wanted and continued to make those counter attacking long balls and now wins are vital meaning attack is needed.

  • 87 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:16 PM

    Mucker isn’t cockney
    They use it in Ulster and the Army as well as England

  • 88 davis_toons // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:17 PM

    4-2-3-1 – could be Rafa Benitez formation,

    1 STK – Fernando Torres? / Mitrovi? (against Huth & Morgan)
    3 AM L/C/R) Pérez Wijnaldum Sissoko (we need more tricky players)
    2 DM – Shelvey Saivet/ Colback
    4 Def Kevin Mbabu/ Dummett Coloccini(c) Taylor Janmaat (Needed Experience Back Four)

    Sub: Rivière, Lascelles, Tioté, Doumbia, Anita

    Captain after Colo: Wijnaldum (c), Shelvey (a.cpt; should focus more on his game for now. )

  • 89 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:19 PM

    Better correct the poor grammer

    We’ve been saying that all season but they’ve proved us wrong time and time again. A Marez or Vardy injury is the only way I can see them tumble now. Wins are becoming vital now so teams need to make a threat at Leicester some time meaning Leicester city themselves are getting the space they wanted for the long ball counter attacking football they play.

    Had teams knew how difficult it would be coming up against this style of play they’d have started playing a tight defensive game already. Each week all they thought is is this leicester city team can’t go on any longer meaning club itself still got the attacking football it wanted and continued to make those counter attacking long balls and now wins are vital meaning attack is needed.

  • 90 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:19 PM

    Rafa couldn’t have picked a better home debut.

  • 91 Thump // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:26 PM

    Huh, didn’t know we’d signed Torres, davis. Club slipped that one in under the radar, eh?

  • 92 davis_toons // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:29 PM

    0-3 (L)

    Newcastle United (4-4-2): Rob Elliot;
    Daryl Janmaat, Chancel Mbemba, Fabricio Coloccini (c), Paul Dummett;
    Moussa Sissoko, Cheick Tiote (Florian Thauvin 19), Vurnon Anita, Georginio Wijnaldum;
    Ayoze Perez (Siem de Jong 81), Aleksandar Mitrovic (Papiss Cisse 62)

    Subs not used: Freddie Woodman, Jamie Sterry, Jamaal Lascelles, Yoan Gouffran

    Leicester City (4-4-2):

    Kasper Schmeichel;

    Danny Simpson, Robert Huth, Wes Morgan (c), Christian Fuchs;

    Riyad Mahrez (Nathan Dyer 88), N’Golo Kanté, Danny Drinkwater, Marc Albrighton;

    Leonardo Ulloa (Shinji Okazaki 72), Jamie Vardy (Andy King 77)

    Subs not used: Mark Schwarzer Ritchie De Laet, Gokhan Inler, Jeff Schlupp

    Referee: Mike Jones (Cheshire)

    Bookings: Newcastle United – Anita (36), Dummett (48), Perez (76), Sissoko (79); Leicester City – Huth (31)

  • 93 toonking // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:29 PM

    Where did you get torres from?
    Rivere, mitro, perez and cisse the newcastle strikers I currently know.

    i’m away now

  • 94 davis_toons // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:36 PM i wish..(he will make it at Newcastle with our warm support..and “starless” team he will shine)

  • 95 Rotonda heights // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:38 PM


    i think a lot of teams haved tried 451 v leicester and come a cropper. they are more than a long ball team and teams keep going deeper and deeper against them and probably over doing the respect.

    Admittedly with Saylor we are doomed but Lascelles, MBemba and MBabu all have pace, if the latter 2 now remarkably recover fitness

    Having a go could pay dividends. Man mark Mahrez with Saviet or similar and get us attacking them for a change, because let’s face it we can’t defend and hold on.

  • 96 lesh // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:45 PM


    As Jib’s always right in whatever he/ she says or does, pasting this link’s unnecessary.

    Come to think of it, Jib’s probably the Urban Dictionary’s lexicographer along with his many other roles with such as the OED, Coliins and other times.

  • 97 davis_toons // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:46 PM

    Kevin Mbabu is back in contention for Newcastle United…(LB)

  • 98 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:53 PM

    Jib and Lesh

    I didn’t know that, you learn something new everyday, i thought it was because I’m sure i heard that a couple of times in only fools and horses.

  • 99 davis_toons // Mar 13, 2016 at 6:57 PM

    Benitez has enjoyed chess since he was a child and once told to a BBC reporter:

    “It is about controlling the middle of the board… just like football.”

    Alonso and Mascherano behind the incredible partnership of Gerrard.

  • 100 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:04 PM

    welsh me old Dutch plate, I knows you ain’t cockney you wasn’t born in the Bow Bells, neither was Del Boy or Roddas for that matter!

  • 101 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:05 PM

    Beating the welsh on Saturday was mint. Scotland beating the frogs to hand us the title a week early made it sweeter. All I need now is for the toon to pull off a miracle tomorrow night and it’s a great weekend and start of next week

  • 102 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:07 PM

    And for Welshie…

    All you need now is for the toon to pull off a miracle tomorrow night to cheer you up from yesterday 😉

  • 103 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:12 PM


    You Bitch

    Ha ha ha

    How are you mate, close match mind you like when it was close match when we BEAT you in the World Cup.

  • 104 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:15 PM

    That’s in the past, can’t wait for tomorrow’s match, a draw will be very good, but a win would be awesome.

  • 105 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:22 PM

    Leicester’s tactics have been sussed? They’re top of the table for a reason. Rafa is a great manager but let’s give Leicester some credit. If we come away with anything tomorrow night, that’d be an amazing point.

    The point being that Rafa’s top class managerial career has not been in fighting relegation battles. Especially not in a white-hot cauldron that SJP can be if we’re inching towards the drop. The next two games are critical.

    We take 3/4 points, and things look great. We lose them both and we’re headed for the drop in my opinion.

  • 106 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:22 PM


    JIB admitting Tufty isn’t world class and won’t see out his contract :-
    “Being shown to be wrong and a mug is hard to take but that’s life I guess I was wrong and I’m a mug .”

    Due to a surfeit of self confessed hubris this is a rare event.

  • 107 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:24 PM


    Definitely a glass half empty view that.

    So how come a team like the Albion can even come near them ?

  • 108 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:28 PM

    Did you watch the Leicester v West Brom game? Leicester dominated them and created multiple chances against a team who parked the bus. West Brom had 2 chances and scored 2 goals. That was a freakishly lucky result. On another night Leicester would have won 4-0

    They are a quality side. 2 days training with Rafa and our squad are capable of getting a result from the table toppers?

    And some people question whether Newcastle fans are deluded?

  • 109 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:29 PM

    Without doubt the loser of the Tyne and Wear derby is going down, it is pretty much a crunch match even with eight left to play as the physiological impact will be huge. On the choive of managers, I’d have Benitez over Warnock, Pearson Pulis and all the other relegation experts all day long.

  • 110 YouCouldn'tMakeItUp // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:30 PM


    Im fine mate, cheers. Yeah i thought you were going to do it again. Mind, you didn’t deserve to this time, in all honesty. Your lot are going to need a big change in philosophy for the trip to NZ in summer, thise buggers would have put 40 points on you in that 1st half.

  • 111 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:30 PM

    It shouldn’t have been close .
    Craig Joubert the ref bottled it
    Tomas Francis should at least have got a yellow card for the eye gouge on Dan Cole.
    He’ll get a long ban for sure – that’s what you get for being born in York and opting to play for Wales .

  • 112 WWSBRD // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:32 PM

    They are good but we were better under Keegan and we don’t sit here with a PL title mate. Stuff them I reckon Rafa can get us to best them, may come too soon but may not, we can beat them tomorrow we probably won’t but screw it why shouldn’t we go looking for 3 points

    There’s a reason Rafa hasn’t made his name in relegation battles…he’s a good manager so why would his teams be looking down they look at title and cups not free fall

  • 113 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:33 PM


    Long term Rafa is the right man to take us forward. He’s an excellent manager and I’m delighted to see him at our club. However, Benitez has been available since he was sacked from Real Madrid a number of months ago – why have we waited until we’re deep in the midst of a relegation scrap to appoint him? Furthermore, why did we wait to appoint him with only 2 days preparation work before a game when there were 9 days between Bournemouth and Leicester?

    I’m happy to eat my words if he proves to be a King of the relegation scrap and keep us up as he truly is an exciting long-term manager. But it is a big “if” whether he can manage the first hurdle in keeping us up.

  • 114 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:34 PM

    It’s not down to being deluded, it’s a massive boost when something like this happens, we’ll just find out sooner rather than later whether the squad is really shit or whether they have just been suffering under poor management, I’d like to think that we’re capable of some good football from the brief good performances we’ve seen this season

  • 115 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:37 PM

    Hope we can go there tomorrow and pick up points.

  • 116 Jail for Ashley // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:37 PM

    Because they hoped and prayed that their man would get four points against Stoke and Bournemouth, if he had we’d be going down.

  • 117 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:41 PM

    A dog (bitch obviously) called Geordie Girl has just won at Crufts.
    Is this an omen ?

  • 118 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:42 PM


    I’m glad you’re feeling uber positive about Rafa’s appointment. I’m tempering my enthusiasm not because I don’t think he can do great things at our club – he could. But rather because he’ll only do great things here if he manages to avoid relegation.

    Our fate will somewhat rest in Rafa’s hands, but a lot of it still rests with the inept sacks of shit who have gotten us in this mess in the first place. Will Rafa suddenly make Sissoko a world beater rather than the arrogant waste of space he has been the last few seasons? Will Rafa suddenly make Paul Dummett look like a PL LB rather than the Conference LB he actually is? Will Rafa turn Mitro into the 20 goal a season striker he has looked woefully short of this season?

    I doubt all of the above. However, if he can instil a bit of spirit and desire in our team, and a mental resilience which has been so sadly lacking all season, then perhaps we’re in with a shout. Our squad is shocking, and we deserve to be where we are. There’s only so much a manager can do.

  • 119 JackButler // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:42 PM

    The personnel on the pitch won’t change but I expect the attitude of the players to change. Injured players miraculously returning to training is the first sign that Raffa will be a very different man to deal with.

  • 120 welshgeordie9 // Mar 13, 2016 at 7:43 PM


    To be honest i think it’s down to piss poor management, any decent manager or coach would get the best out of players like, Gini, Perez, mitrovic and sissoko, wouldn’t be surprised you see a different side to that lot and a few more under Benitez, we will soon see.

  • 121 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:00 PM


    I think your antipathy towards Ashley might be influencing your grudging views somewhat on our survival chances.

    If he’s finally made the right decision, and changed the club model, then its clear he’s here for the long term, and that doesn’t fit your agenda, judging from your previous postings..

    Now I am no fan of Ashley and have boycotted his businesses for a few years, but it might be easier for us fans if he learns how to run the club properly, rather than have more insecurity through a sale.

    I can’t think of any one else I’d prefer at the helm than Rafa with 10 to go – not even the Sacked One.

    As for Leicester – their results are getting harder to predict. Great against Citeh..Took 89 minutes to break Norwich down, lost to Gooners, an hour to take the lead against Bindippers and also the draw with WBA – they really are not invincible, and cruising through every game like they were doing. And they may not want to admit it, but expectations create pressure. I still hope they win the EPL overall, but would be pleased to see their lead cut to 2 pts tomorrow

  • 122 WWSBRD // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:28 PM

    Will Rafa make our players better? Yes because our players will work to prove their worth under him. Will it be enough to stay up? I don’t know I bloody hope so but hand on heart I don’t know
    BUT I am a hell of a lot more confident now

    Rafa can win a CL with a poor Liverpool team, he can keep us in the PL with a decent Newcastle team

  • 123 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:31 PM

    My views on our survival chances are not shaped by Ashley in any way, and you are simply looking for ways to discredit my opinion – or validate your own, whichever way you want to look at it.

    Benitez’s appointment may now see a change of how the club is run from now on. If so, I welcome that. As I said previously, Rafa can do great things, but only if we stay up – and at present that is a big “if”

    I’m doubting our survival chances based on the fact that we have tough games coming up and a poor squad lacking in leadership and ability.

    By all means, feel enthused by Benitez’s appointment, but don’t let your enthusiasm become delusion. Newcastle fans have been so starved of good news that we latch onto anything that meagerly resembles it.

    I’m choosing to remain sceptical, yet hopeful, that Rafa can keep us up. Because if he does, then there may be a brighter dawn. He has a monumental task before him before any of us can lick our lips at what might be achieved long-term.

  • 124 Mag52 // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:33 PM

    There’s clearly only so much a new manager can do after only three days at the club and with the defence/injury problems we still have, so my expectations are by no means sky high for the next few games.
    Having said that, most new managers seem to get a handful of wins in their first few matches, and there’s no reason why this shouldn’t apply to us.
    I’m banking on Rafa’s ability to motivate a team whose motivation under Macca had been woeful, so, for me, a point or even three at Leicester is not out of the question.

  • 125 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:33 PM

    Rafa Benitez doesn’t believe our squad is shocking, and we deserve to be where we are.

    He said the quality of our squad was one of the reasons he signed.

    Señor Benitez is obsessive in his pursuit of footy knowledge and he doesn’t do bullshit.

  • 126 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:34 PM

    I just don’t want too many bubbles to have been burst due to an unrealistic expectation that we’re going to go away to the league leaders and get a result. A 3-0 humping wouldn’t have been out of the question with this same team under Macca so don’t be surprised if Rafa doesn’t fair much better.

  • 127 WWSBRD // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:41 PM

    Do u think McClaren and Rafa are on par? Managers make a difference mate

  • 128 hibbitt // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:54 PM

    a point any way any how
    a point will be a very good start
    no pressure rafa just a point

  • 129 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:54 PM

    And Geordie Girl is best in show at Crufts…

    Has to be an omen (he says hopefully)

  • 130 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Mar 13, 2016 at 8:59 PM

    If we can match Leicester for work rate all over the pitch we have a chance Vardy and Mahrez are great this season but if we can stop the supply to them you never know

    I can actually see Perez starting up front similar in a way to the way Torres used to play for Liverpool

  • 131 martoon // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:01 PM

    Hi Ruddy still studying for your law degree?
    I think you’re being pessimistic about our chances of staying up as I’ve said before we only need to get 2 more points than Norwich and the makems to stay up in our remaining games. As we play them both I don’t this this is completely unrealistic under Rafa.

  • 132 Munster Mag // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:01 PM

    Ruddy, our team is worth more than the teams at the bottome and Rafa will galvanise a reaction from them. I have a feeling we could take points from all oiur remaining games. Hoepfully he can make Sissoko play and dump him if he doesnt. The last two managers were over impressed with his physique and both were quoted as such, the daft bastards.

  • 133 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:02 PM


    I don’t seek to either validate or excuse your opinions at all.
    They’re different that’s all.

    Our survival really depends on the new manager “bounce” effect.
    And there’s little doubt of Rafa’s tactical superiority to Tufty – and that ought to show immediately.

    Confidence can make average players achieve above their capabilities and is a mysterious quality. Don’t be in too much of a rush to exclude it – after all Ranieri has that ability, and we’ve seen the effects.
    We’ll know tomorrow evening anyway.

  • 134 toon kk // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:07 PM

    I would like to see Rafa give Doumbia a start, with Perez or Mitrovic, a 4 4 2 formation is our best bet imo.

  • 135 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:22 PM

    Lads, I’m not saying Macca and Rafa are on par at all – it’s abundantly clear Rafa is superior in every way. What I’m saying is that we’re asking Rafa to make an immediate difference to a squad where the rot has already set in.

    If we take a point away to Leicester and beat Sunderland Rafa has the ability to turn that momentum into saving us from relegation. If he fails to make that immediate impact then he has a monumental task in a short space of time.

  • 136 Sir Braveheart // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:24 PM

    2-0 loss tomorrow to Leicester, but a much improved performance.

    Sunderland game will be scrappy, few moments of quality as both teams will be fearful of conceding. But I have us down to scrape it 1-0.

    Into the break and then a much improved performance against Norwich, score will be close, 2-1 win, but in reality we will dominate the game a day rarely look in trouble.

    2-1 loss to Southampton, 2-1 win against Swansea. 1-0 loss to Liverpool but a great performance, 1-1 draw with Palace, 3-0 win against Villa which will almost guarantee our survival. 2-2 draw with Spurs, simultaneously giving us enough points to survive and ending Spurs title bid. Last day against man city….who cares! (Let’s go with 2-0 win since the city players will already be on holiday and St James will be jumping.)

  • 137 Sir Braveheart // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:33 PM

    Just to disappoint a few though, I’m going to add that I predict Sunderland also stay up. Swansea get pulled into the fight at the last minute and end up taking the third spot with Villa and Norwich. Sunderland survive by a single point. Jammy gits.

  • 138 Graeme // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:36 PM

    I’m not expecting anything at all from tomorrows game except a vastly improved performance. Rafa’s only had 3 days, he’s a Manager not a miracle worker. A point would be a hell of an achievement in the circumstances.

    I do expect that he will have had a lot more time on the training ground, by the time we tackle the unwashed – now thats a game we really NEED to win. It would provide an almighty lift to everyone at SJP and every single fan would gain a bit of respect back and put a spring in their step!!

  • 139 Toon Tang // Mar 13, 2016 at 9:42 PM

    If we’d waited a few more days we could have bagged Dougie Freedman. Gutted

  • 140 NUFCPaul // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:05 PM

    Sir Braveheart – don’t the Mackems usually stay up by the skin of their teeth thanks to the usual three (or six) points we award them every year? If we can deny them those points next weekend then they might finally drop out of the league, and about bloody time too.

    And to any supporter saying that they hope the scum stay up because they’d miss the derby game next season, you’ve obviously never lived in the North East and had to put up with the mouthy buggers from Wearside. Funny how they’ve all gone a bit quiet recently though. And the ones who do pipe up are unbelievably bitter. So no change there then!

  • 141 21st Century Schizoid Man // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:06 PM

    If we compete hard for 95 minutes tomorrow then we can’t complain.
    Another insipid can’t be arsed showing and we’ll go down.

  • 142 Munster Mag // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:06 PM

    Sir Braveheart, I think Swansea are going to fall into trouble aswell. sacking Monk was always an overreaction and i hope they pay for it, but Sam going down would be a joy.

  • 143 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:08 PM

    Rumour doing the rounds

    Benitez has recalled armstrong

  • 144 Munster Mag // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:09 PM

    NUFCPaul, very well put. I have never lived on tyneside but have travelled aaal awa with your boys and been to a derny ( at home ) . I completely agree. ” Sunderland staying up is good for northeast football” . Bollocks.

  • 145 Lee Charnley Bunga Party // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:14 PM

    @Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Yeah a lot of rumours online about Armstrong coming back I would actually love it if he did come back under Benitez I think he would do well

    People say it will screw his development bla bla bla but he is in great form and if we were to get relegated next season the pressure on him to be the main scorer to get us promoted will be immense

    Would be a good option to bring off the bench as well

  • 146 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:18 PM

    Wi at the moment nobody else knows how to put the ball in the net

  • 147 Goofy // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:20 PM

    I obviously hope we beat the Mackems but.. the last 2 games at home we’ve been high spirited with a couple of wins under our belt and they’ve just got new Managers, Di Canio and Advocate. Their morale was low and ours were high but on the day we didn’t turn up with any heart. They wanted it more than we did and out played us physically and mentally.

    Not one for picking at stats it’s just the’ve got a habit recently of p1ssing on our chips.

    We’ve a great manager who could definitely change all that but the’ve a thorn in our ar5es for a while now.

    Read on FB some guy thinking Benitez is only signing for his retirement fund. He’s only 55, he’s got a good 10 years in him, you just have to look at Ranieri, Wenger and Ferguson to see that it can still be done in your 60’s.

  • 148 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:32 PM

    You need to take into account the bounce effect it will have on the players. How many of them could’ve imagined being in one of Rafa’s team? Let’s not mess about, he’s one of the best and these players suddenly have the chance to learn from one of the best. I imagine that alone will boost performace – nobody wants to blow this amazing chance that has dropped into their lives. I imagine them falling over each other to impress him. Having witnessed first hand that these players can produce good football, I’m not too surprised to hear Rafa says he believes them good enough to escape. Tomorrow might be too early for a result we’d all written off anyway, but you just never know… fingers crossed.

  • 149 sing in the corner // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:32 PM

    I heard Townsend is training again. Maybe the Leicester game is too early for him, worth saving him for the makems because it means much more. We need his pace against their slow back line. I also think Doumbia would be preferable to start. Ask OShea and co would they rather slug it out with a Mitro, or someone with a bit more guile / pace?

  • 150 Belfast // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:36 PM

    Expecting nothing from this game but the next two we must win or we’re down.

    This appointment should have happened during the 18 day break so I won’t be praising the odious Lee Charnley.

    Losing that Bournemouth game was a massive ferk up.

  • 151 Goofy // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:41 PM


    I’m hoping for the new Manager buzz but am trying not to get ahead of myself and getting over confident just to come back down to earth with a bang. I

    It’s going to have a lot riding on it for both sides, who’s going to give more on the day is what’s coming down to. Fingers, legs and eyes crossed here as well 😀

  • 152 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:43 PM

    Some kid on Twatter reckons Arma was training with the squad at Benton thisafter.

  • 153 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:48 PM

    a 100% effort performance i would be happy with..anything more is a bonus,you can tell from the banter on here the last few days how much getting a quality manager in has got everyone up…christ even bladeuser was moderately up and happier and he’s a grumpy bugger at the best of times!….so hopefully professional footballers who know playing for this man could mean success IF we pull our fingers out and survive this season…the test will come if we conceed…then we’ll see what they believe.

  • 154 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:52 PM

    anyone heard of nufc hub?…they reckon armas recall is bull….never heard of it so dont no if its true to honest.

  • 155 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:53 PM

    I think Arma is Rafa’s type of player, so would be delighted to see him making those killer runs, with Shelvey and Co providing the ammo. First ten yards – electric. Finishing – excellent. Give him the chances we’ve been missing and I guarantee goals. Any league; any level. He’s got that which cannot be coached – he’s a natural finisher. Would I gamble our survival on his young shoulders? You’re damn right I would. Nobody else is better, it’s that simple. A legend waiting to be born. Bring it on! 😉 😉

  • 156 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:56 PM

    you’ve sang the praises for arma everytime he’s mentioned,and its good to see but have to ask..r u his fatha?lol

  • 157 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:58 PM

    joking aside bobby….do you actually think he could come in right now and score enough goals to contribute to keeping us up?

  • 158 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 10:59 PM

    Goofy. I expect nothing from tomorrow if i’m honest – but desperate to be wrong – but I expect big things for the mackems. Rafa and fat heed dislike each other, but Rafa’s win rate is embarrassing for fat heed. He goes into these games half beaten by the superiority of Rafa and they’re already bricking it. SJP will be lifting and we’ll blow them away. Either that or this crystal ball goes back! 😉

  • 159 sing in the corner // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:05 PM

    I just sense Leicester are going off the boil a little bit and if our lot have felt the Rafa boost a fraction of how the fans have felt it we might just sneak a tasty little result here you know!? The pressure will be starting to get to them every game that passes and winning the thing becomes expected rather than a bit of a joke. Spurs are keeping stride with them.
    If we start brightly you never know. And a point here going into the Makems game…priceless.

  • 160 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:10 PM

    Lol, no – never met the lad. Just followed his progress through the academy, then U21’s and England’s youth teams. Best finisher since Shearer by a distance. 100% better than what we’ve got right now. Seriously, if you’d followed him like I did, you wouldn’t ask that question. Both feet. Quality goals that would grace any league. We’re not taking chances when we create them. He will take those chances. I agreed with his loan and the extension – and I’m not sure we can recall him to be honest – but I would also support recalling him now. We need goals and no amount of coaching will ever make our current crop better than Arma. That takes confidence and we ain’t got time. Arma can’t be blamed if we still go down, so it wouldn’t crush his self belief. I think it’s a no brainer, but like i said, i’ve not read the small print.

  • 161 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:13 PM

    I can’t even see a draw tomorrow. In fact I predict at least a 2-0 defeat. We haven’t got the ability to be as tight as we need to be in defence. I expect a more spirited performance from everyone though.

    Of course I hope to be proven wrong and have the “Rafa factor” lead to a surprise away victory but I’d be gobsmacked if that happened.

  • 162 Ruddy Marveaux-lous // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:14 PM

    Scores goals in League One and he’s up there with Shearer? Behave man.

  • 163 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:17 PM

    Ruddy, you’re right on the money mate. Why should we suddenly choose the team top of the table to get our first away win for months? Logically it’s madness. Ain’t that football in a nutshell? 🙂

  • 164 SPRINGY // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:18 PM

    cheers bobby…would love to see if that could happen…would save a fortune in transfer kitty…..hope what you believe pans out….i was just having a laugh before and the fact u’ve followed his career and have so much confidence in the lad is canny to see.

  • 165 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:29 PM

    Ruddy, if you read it properly I say he’s the most natural since shearer. He’s done this since he was a bairn. England captain at his age groups. Goals nearly a goal a game. Nowhere am i comparing him to shearer, but since shearer he’s the most natural finisher by a distance. Put him in any league and play to his strengths and he will score goals. Can we say that about our current crop? Not a chance. Go look at the quality of his goals. He’s a natural. You can’t coach that. His goals to shots ratio isn’t to be sniffed at either. Quality. 🙂

  • 166 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:37 PM

    Springy, he’s the best academy product since Gazza. This lad has got me off my seat for the last few seasons and it’s been a while since anybody did that – since Gazza probably! 😉 I can only go on my own eyes and 58 years worth of experience when I praise this kid. He’s a very special talent with so much potential it excites me as to how far he could go. One of our own makes ya proud like.

  • 167 Tsunki // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:38 PM

    I hope that in all the enthusiasm nobody runs away with the thought we’re going to win tomorrow or even look a shed load different from the last game. Unless Rafa brought half real madrid with him don’t expect too much. But we might at least see a bit of belief. That’s as much as I expect.

    BUT anything more than a draw and I will be reservedly optimistic about the derby for the first time in two years.

  • 168 Bobbybee // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:41 PM

    Strange, my tablet isn’t charging whilst i use it. Dropping rapidly. Need to charge for a while. Bugger.

  • 169 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:41 PM

    On reflection I think the Arma story is wishful thinking by fans.

    Even if we were thinking of recalling him it wouldn’t be to play at Leicester tomorrow night after training with the squad for one day.

    Also remember he played a full game at Blackpool on Saturday afternoon.

  • 170 bettyswallocks // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:41 PM

    From what I can gather reading about Rafa’s football philosophy, he likes to send the team out with a player ( normally the captain) or several players who can keep the team disciplined and focused on the game plan and the tactics that have been worked on in training.

    This is clearly not a job for Coloccini as his lack of vocal interaction will prevent his effectiveness in this role. Maybe this has resulted in the lack of cohesion and team unity as was recently pointed out by Perez. It will be interesting to see who is chosen as captain and if he is capable of maintaining the game plan.

  • 171 bettyswallocks // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:43 PM

    Tsunki……. Are you hoping for a good result tomorrow?

  • 172 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:44 PM

    Coventry City and Leicester City are 27 miles apart.
    Rafa may well ask Arma to show his face and meet him.

  • 173 Tsunki // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:48 PM

    Betty – obviously as an Ashley hater with little interest in team affairs, yes I am 🙂

  • 174 bettyswallocks // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:50 PM

    Tsunki……. Good answer . Now you’re on the wavelength. Lol.

  • 175 Jib // Mar 13, 2016 at 11:56 PM

    I remember donkeys years ago I was at a rugby coaching seminar ( I was a young player at the time ) addressed by Jackie Charlton of all people.
    He was talking about the difficulties of a coach getting his ideas across to young soccer players.
    Having to use simple language , keeping his temper , and pausing when he saw their eyes starting to glaze over.
    So I guess a player who “gets” what your trying to do is invaluable.
    Can you imagine what it must be like to coach one on one with Obertan – you’d need a box of Kleenex to wipe away the drool.

  • 176 Tsunki // Mar 14, 2016 at 12:07 AM

    Wasn’t obertan at Uni? He might look like a pedigree mutt but I don’t think he’s a moron. Unlike you jeff. You are clearly a moron. That’s how it works, isn’t it? A random insult out of the blue? Just kidding.

    Or am I?


  • 177 Tsunki // Mar 14, 2016 at 12:09 AM

    You keep a box of kleenex handy Jeff? Ha ha just kidding.


  • 178 Tsunki // Mar 14, 2016 at 12:11 AM

    Any way that’s my quota of random insults, off to bed, work in the morning. I’ll catch up on the witty replies tomorrow
    I’m sure they will be well above almost average. And random.

  • 179 bettyswallocks // Mar 14, 2016 at 12:13 AM

    Jib……… I think it’s massively important that the message from the coaches is taken into the game and maintained for the duration. I assume that under Mc Claren the work done in training came to nothing for most of the matches he was in charge of. This must be frustrating when things maybe look good on the training ground but are not transferred to the pitch. Being able to make the transition between training well and then winning matches was obviously not Mc C’s forte. Rafa is renowned for being able to do this. Living in hope .

    For most of the season there has been little or no coordination from midfield to attack

  • 180 Jib // Mar 14, 2016 at 12:21 AM

    Tsunki must think Clairefontaine Football Academy is a University.

    Gazza went to Redheugh University.

    Shearer went to 2 – Cramlington then Wallsend for his masters.

  • 181 lesh // Mar 14, 2016 at 1:24 AM


    How’s your back these days?

  • 182 Blofal // Mar 14, 2016 at 1:55 AM

    I would like to try this and it is assuming Townsend, Cisse, Mbabu and Tiote are still not fit. I would like to see De Jong get some game time and if we are going to play defensive (as is Rafa’s style) then we will need pace on the counter. On that basis Doumbia is a better option than Mitrovic. Saviet is a good player but needs game time but ideally a fit and in form Tiote would partner Shelvey in the midfield. Anita just isn’t quite good enough at LB for me so Colback has to play there. Wijnaldum did well for us when he first started and was playing out on the left. But if he goes missing he needs to be dropped.

    Janamaat – Lascelles – Talyor – Colback
    —————Shelvey – Saviet
    –Sissoko——–De Jong—–Wijnaldum

    Subs: Darlow, Perez, Mitrovic, Aarons, Anita, and whoever else we can find to fill the bench!!

  • 183 davis_toons // Mar 14, 2016 at 2:27 AM

    To start De Jong will be a risk. He is still catching up and everyone knows about his speed and movement.

    A few good touches is not enough he got to work alot harder for the team just like Jonjo or AGAIN we will lost out in the midfield.

    Either someone have to be working like “Jonas” or everyone have to put in a shift.

    We playing under MC we have a good spell in the midfield creating chances after chances, our strikers just couldn’t convert it.

    In the end, our midfielders just lost it..not creating any more..Its very disappointing that Mitrovic just misses by inches every time.

    Everyone should know if Mitrovic were to convert those chances Rafa will not be here. He got drop by MC but
    Rivière just couldn’t score goals as well.

  • 184 davis_toons // Mar 14, 2016 at 2:35 AM

    ..apart from Cisse that could finish that’s about it. Too bad he was injured and MC couldn’t have him to finish.

    He tried Pérez upfront again he has his problem being too light weight. Running all over the place to steal the ball back apart from staying up front to link up play.

    In the end, run out of gas.

  • 185 mattyNUFC // Mar 14, 2016 at 4:27 AM

    man, arma playing just behind mitro whos knocking down and holding up for him sounds very exciting

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