Rafa Benitez Explains What Has Given Newcastle A Lift


It wasn’t pretty but Newcastle got the win they desperately needed today against Crystal Palace and we are now on a surge to safety with 8 points from the last four games.

That’s about 25% of our points this season in just four games, but Rafa and the lads will now have a full week to prepare for the game at Villa Park next Saturday and that will be another cup final – and it will not be an easy game.

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Rafa Benitez on the touchline today

The capacity crowd at Newcastle urged their side on and we saw a terrific goal from Andros Townsend, although Rafa says the former Spurs players could (should) have scored one or two more after that.

And Karl Darlow made the save of the season for Newcastle when he saved Yohan Cabaye’s penalty and that’s the first of ten penalties they have missed this season.

This is what our (great) manager Rafa Benitez said after the game:

“It was a great game for everyone.” “The team spirit and commitment, the connection between fans and players has given us a lift.”

“The main thing was to show character and win the game, after that Sunderland and Norwich could win. But that doesn’t matter! You have to do your job. We now concentrate on Aston Villa.”

“It was a fantastic winning goal, but it was a pity as well. Andros scored a great goal, but he could have scored one or two more.”

Newcastle are now going from losers under Steve McClaren and John Carver to winners under Rafa Benitez.

We have only won eight games all season, but two of them have come in the last four games and we must make that three in the last five games at Villa Park.

That could be the win that saves us this season – but we must get all 3 points somehow – it doesn’t have to be pretty.

Howay The Lads!!

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112 comments so far

  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:04 PM

    Comment #1

    Rafa’s given us that lift, but he’s too modest to say so himself. Imagine if that was hippo heed, or Pardew? They’d be drowning in self praise. 😉

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:08 PM

    Comment #2

    Noahj
    I reckon Rafa sees Cisse as a willing runner to pressure their defenders. But also the opposition know that he’s a will-o-the-wisp and have to keep him closely marked.

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  • Jib

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:12 PM

    Comment #3

    I’ve never been a huge critic of Mike Dean but I thought he did his best to screw it up for us today.
    The immediate yellow for Chancel early doors without a finger wag first was naughty and hamstrung him for the rest of the game.

    Two yellows for us none for them – yer ‘avin a larf !

    And his usual contentious penalty.

    Well done Cabs for doing the right thing.
    On MotD tonight looks at Yoans eyes – he indicates to Darlow which way to dive.

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:15 PM

    Comment #4

    Jib
    What about the fact that the Mbemba yellow card was a clear yellow card? And unnecessary by Mbemba. Mbemba not helped by our inability to deliver the ball in the box.

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  • mindshaft

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:16 PM

    Comment #5

    haha doubt Cabaye cares if we go down or not – was a poor penalty but they always look poor if keeper guesses the right way. if Darlow had dived the other way then people would say it was a good pen

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  • stan anderson

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:16 PM

    Comment #6

    Please Mr slug you must see that you need to have a real football person at our club.
    Not has beens from the 1960s and pen sharpeners,and the other leeches that are there for the ride and money.
    We can only hope that Rafa is really loving our club and is willing to stay with us whatever happens.
    Maybe he can engage with Mr Slug and give him some knowledge of how a Premier League club ought to be run.
    Ashley OOT.

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:19 PM

    Comment #7

    Jib

    Aye, and the Colback yellow card was a clear yellow card. Are you saying it wasn’t?

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  • mindshaft

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:23 PM

    Comment #8

    Think Rafa actually dropping players such as Gini, Shelvey has shown players they need to give it all or be dropped – I’ve no problem with him starting Cisse as he pulls defenders all over the place and is a lot more mobile than Mitrovic – Cisse can be annoying with his first touch but he did show some nice touches as well today.
    Dummett whilst okay defensively is basically a hoofball merchant who constantly gives possession away.
    Difficult to fault anyone today – Gini could have done better but still made a lot of the chances himself
    Lascelles and Mbemba are a decent partnership , lets hope we can keep them no matter what league we are in next season

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:23 PM

    Comment #9

    They should’ve had at least one for timewasting if nothing else. What’s more annoying is that they deliberately wasted time from the first kick. That time then comes back in their favour by having five minutes for them to try and score! This has happened to us before! A late goal in time added on for their flaming cheating! Wasting time add ons should never benefit the guilty, but they quite clearly do. Not sure how to fix it fairly, without others getting up in arms over it. Contentious issue. Discuss? 😉

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  • mindshaft

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:25 PM

    Comment #10

    Jib – both Colback and Mbembas cards were deserved and pretty obvious yellows – thier pen was more contentious as i dont even think it hit Sissokos hand

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:26 PM

    Comment #11

    There was a lot of poor passing not even under pressure so conceding possession to a side known to thrive on counter attacking.

    I think from watching on line there was tension in players not necessarily from crowd just the situation we are in. What did it seem like to those who were there?

    Palace’s time wasting from the whistle made it difficult to keep any momentum.

    A couple of stand out players with all working hard but not a game to remember apart from the ovation to the 96, Townsend’s free kick Darlow’s saves and of course 3 more precious points. At the end of the season we have had the latter is what it is all about not scintillating performances welcome though they would be.

    Still drained but will watch MOTD 🙂

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  • mindshaft

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:27 PM

    Comment #12

    They could have been given yellows for the time wasting, I remember us doing that same tactic under Pards

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  • reilly

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:27 PM

    Comment #13

    2 more wins thats all.
    if not lets hope we drag the scum down with us.

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:27 PM

    Comment #14

    Jib
    Contentious penalty you say? Difficult to see at the game and on tv but it looks like Dean called it right. I reckon your post @3 shows that football is not really your bag.

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  • stan anderson

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:27 PM

    Comment #15

    Ashley really should see the potential in this club.
    It only needs a sniff of hope of success and the fans would flock back and buy all that is Black and White.
    Ashley OOT

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  • NoahJ

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:28 PM

    Comment #16

    blackley,

    I’d love to say that’s the reason, but I don’t think Cisse’s that smart lol. Probably more that rafa has a winning formula that he doesn’t want to break…. cisse’s movement is so poor, it’s almost a waste of 60 minutes (until he’s subbed) for us to score. I personally think he could be more of an impact sub than mitro, so if I was rafa, I’d switch them round.

    Another positive for us today: it’s impossible for us to get relegated at villa park again – that would have been just topped up this miserable season for me (along with probable sunderland staying up, and a pardew fa cup)

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  • Jib

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:29 PM

    Comment #17

    Blackley must have gone to the same school as Jail

    He clearly has problems with English comprehension as well.

    I know you like like niggling at every point I make , however if you think there was no occasion on which a Palace player could have been yellow – carded you are dimmer than I thought (and that is pretty dim !)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPbaWf5-uzE

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:32 PM

    Comment #18

    Bobby@9

    It annoyed the hell out of me but once we had scored we did give some of it back to them with our goal kicks etc. 🙂

    Not sure what can be done about it but it was worse in 1st half and there were 3 minutes added on not entirely due to injuries I think.

    Time wasting, wrestling in box and stealing yards on throw ins are my biggest bug bears in the game at moment. Rarely see anything done about them and some teams have it down to a fine art.

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  • stan anderson

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:35 PM

    Comment #19

    The Scum have certainly had the luck on their side.
    It worries me as we are much better than they are.
    We were all over them at the Stadium of Shite till the ref.joined their ranks

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:35 PM

    Comment #20

    Mags, this time of the season marra! The players are bound to be a touch nervy. There wasn’t much concern in the crowd, in reply to your question, considering what’s at stake. At no time were we ever under pressure really. The odd scare, but that always happens – that’s football. Even when they got the pen, i expected darlow to save it, because it felt right. Momentum is crucial. Sunlun’s has stalled, norwich never got started. Those draws are music to my ears. If you can’t lose, a draw is a good second! 😉 They’re feeling the pressure, whilst ours gave me a feeling of a team that knows what it needs to do. The workrate off the ball today was tremendous.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:38 PM

    Comment #21

    Mackems are lucky that Defoe has avoided any injuries. Still if we win last 2 games draws are no good to them or Norwich.

    I think they are looking at today as a point gained ( as would we in that situation in 94th minute) but it was 2 points dropped.

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:38 PM

    Comment #22

    Whoa! Talksport singing our praises?! There’s a first! 😉

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:43 PM

    Comment #23

    Jib
    You are the dim one. If that was the point you wanted to make, you would be well advised to provide evidence to support it. You provided nothing. In fact you shot yourself in the foot by providing three examples of Mike Dean appearing to get it spot on. How silly.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:43 PM

    Comment #24

    Thanks Bobby.

    On stream i had the crowd were noisy at times and gave good backing but there were quieter moments. Never heard any sighs/groans though despite the poor passing as you get sometimes but it isn’t the same as being there.

    Were you not nervous in 1st half? I was throughout match but after penalty save was begining to think it was our day 🙂

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:45 PM

    Comment #25

    Mags, i was thinking along the lines of taking the injury time away from the ref. Let the 4th official do it. He can seperate time wasting minutes into who did it. Don’t let it ever benefit the guilty, that’s all. Then, line them up against the wall…. too much? 😉

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  • lesh

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:46 PM

    Comment #26

    Bobby

    Speaking of Rafa’s quiet approach to things, you probably picked up on the way he gently kicked Townsend’s backside when he mentioned that although Townsend scored one, he should’ve had another one or two.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:47 PM

    Comment #27

    Bobby
    Oh and was it you that started the YNWA as you promised 🙂

    Even on telly it came across the clapping and made me proud of our fans

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:48 PM

    Comment #28

    Jib criticises Mike Dean for his poor decisions. In support he cites three examples of Dean appearing to get his decisions spot on. And then when I point this out, he criticises the English comprehension of Jail and me. You couldn’t make it up.

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  • lesh

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:48 PM

    Comment #29

    It seems we’re on MoTD first.

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:50 PM

    Comment #30

    Mags, not really. Even when palace had possession, they just huffed and puffed and i was convinced we’d steal it from the start. You know me mags, eternal optimist! 😉 It felt right. And what a goal to win it. Villa next. I believe we’ll win that as well. I’ve got to believe because i’m just not ready to throw the towel in yet, so my options are limited. 😉

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:50 PM

    Comment #31

    Bobby@25

    Seems like 4th official has enough being harangued by managers and coaches :-()
    Good call though. Don’t some sports have a seperate time keeper.

    On a wider point I remember reading some time ago that in a 90 minute match the ball is actually only in play for not much over the hour!!

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:51 PM

    Comment #32

    Mitro trying to rouse the crowd boils my pish. Janmaat does it. That pair need to do something with the ball worthy of rousing the crowd.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:56 PM

    Comment #33

    Bobby

    For some reason when you are actually there at a match there is a different vibe as to how things are going than watching on TV or listening ( especially with doom mongers for commentators!) but it does help to be a massive optimist.

    Close ups on TV help but seeing the whole field of play and off ball running by players provides the greater appreciation of a game.

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:56 PM

    Comment #34

    Mags, i started it where i sit, the best i could hope for. Then again, they did play YNWA before ko like i requested in my e mail. 😉 Joking apart, it was very respectful and stadium wide. We did them proud marra.

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  • Blackley and Brownlie

    Apr 30, 2016 at 9:59 PM

    Comment #35

    Magscar @33
    Careful. I’ve made that point before. It’s not popular on here.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 10:02 PM

    Comment #36

    B&B@32

    Know what you mean but I actually enjoyed Mitro’s moment which came after he had roughed up Delaney. He and Dann had had it pretty easy up until he came on.

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  • Mister Tuff

    Apr 30, 2016 at 10:06 PM

    Comment #37

    Oleg G – no decisions by tossing the coin. Posted this last week.
    Mister Tuff // Apr 18, 2016 at 12:58 AM
    Positions decided as follows:-
    Points, then goal difference, and then goals scored.
    If it is still equal after that -play off at a neutral ground.

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  • magscar

    Apr 30, 2016 at 10:07 PM

    Comment #38

    B&B@35

    So I have seen but I defy anyone who has ever been to a live match at SJP to not agree!

    Not denigrating those who haven’t been able to attend but it is like the difference to watching a band live in a crowd and watching in UltraHD with 7.1 surround sound – great substitute but nowt like the real thing

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  • Bobbybee

    Apr 30, 2016 at 10:07 PM

    Comment #39

    Mags, aye i’ve heard that too. Do it like ice hockey – stop the clock every time it goes dead. Play 35 minutes each half. 😉 Naw, don’t know the real answer, but those clowns at the fa are paid to come up with ideas.
    That’s why i love to go to games marra. The bigger picture and the buzz. They could put us on tv live every game, free of charge, but i’d still pay to watch. Think it’s become an illness mags lmao! I can get a kick out of watching a sunday morning league game live, let alone Newcastle. I just love football. We all do. It’s our weakness. 😉

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  • Goofy

    Apr 30, 2016 at 10:11 PM

    Comment #40

    Great win today, nervy in the last 5-10 mins but a precious 3 points.

    I’m beginning to believe confidence brings luck. All season we’ve not looked comfortable in any area on the park, now that Benitez is here the confidence has risen and so has the luck, with the other teams dropping points and Darlow saving the pen.

    If Leicester beat Manure tomorrow that’ll be another possible bonus, as long as Spurs keep winning 2nd spot will be theres before the last game of the season, meaning they’ll having nowt to play for, giving us a better chance of the win.

    Maybe lady luck is giving us a little back.

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