Why Saving Newcastle Is Benitez’ Most Difficult Challenge Ever

Just a fantastic question and answer session in the Chronicle earlier this week with Sky Sports Spanish correspondent Guillem Balague provided Newcastle fans with an insight on Rafa Benitez the man – that single-minded no-nonsense  manager who seems to be born to become the Newcastle manager.

But that dream could all end next month if Newcastle cannot escape relegation, with the 56 year-old likely to want to leave and look for another club or even become the National manager of Spain.

Rafa benitez arrives at st. james'

The great Rafa Benitez – Newcastle United manager

But if he is given everything he wants at Newcastle to fix the club from top to bottom he could even stay, but that’s still a long shot.

It’s going to be very important for Newcastle fans to support the team and support Rafa for the next four games so that we stay up and everything will be completely fantastic this summer – and that will be a big change.

A possible secondary benefit of the fans’ support is to fully convince Rafa that Newcastle United are like a second Liverpool for the Spaniard – and he should stay even if the disaster scenario happens and we are relegated.

Guillem Balague hints this could be Rafa’s most difficult challenge in management ever:

“It was a very, very difficult job – changing the dynamic is always very difficult.” 

“Once you are falling down a mountain, it is almost impossible to stop it.”

“It feels like he is changing the mindset and that there has been a different approach from some players that had either given up or didn’t seem to be playing for the previous manager.”

“So that straightaway is a success.”

“Then you have to have a little bit of luck, you have to have refereeing decisions helping you – or at least not affecting you like against Manchester City.”

“All in all he has had the sort of impact I expected in, what is in my opinion, one of the hardest jobs in football.”

“Winning a league – apart from in the case of Leicester, which could be the exception to the rule – is always a pressure because you are at a club that can.”

“But to stop a team going down I think that is harder than winning a title.”

When Rafa arrived at Newcastle we were tumbling down the mountain full force – and it’s a pity the incompetent Board didn’t realize that and replace the woeful Steve McClaren earlier this year, once Rafa became available and the word on the grapevine (so to speak) was he was interested in the Newcastle job if it became available.

The Liverpool fans just love the man and he will get a warm and terrific reception at Anfield on Saturday, when he leads the Newcastle side out for what is another vital game for us.

Let’s hope Rafa enjoys it – and gets at least a point for us from the game.

Howay the Lads!!

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