Newcastle have been relegated from the Premier League twice and the last time it was a tremendous effort from Chris Hughton and assistant manager Colin Calderwood that got us promoted with a massive 102 points and 30 wins back in 2010.
That was only 4 points short of the record Championship 106 points (31 wins) of Reading in season 2005-2006.
Chris is now manager of Brighton and Colin is his assistant down south – and they have done really well.
Brighton were so unlucky to miss out on an automatic promotion last season – Middlesbrough had a better goal difference by just 2 goals and were promoted.
Chris Hughton and Colin Calderwood while at Newcastle
And then Brighton were eliminated in the play-offs by Sheffield Wednesday and Newcastle and Brighton will now meet next season in the Championship.
Chris has talked to the local Brighton Argus about yesterday’s news about Rafa Benitez staying on at Newcastle:
“It gives Newcastle that little bit of stability.” “They haven’t got to go out and get someone else.”
“Benitez has done very well in a short period of time there.” “It is a major coup for the club and there is no doubt it makes the division stronger.”
“As a player you always want to play against the best teams and the bigger clubs.” “They don’t come much bigger in the Championship than Newcastle – so it’s one for the players to look forward to.”
“I’ve met him on a couple of occasions.” “Whenever I have spoken to him he is a proper football person.”
“He loves the game and the loves the English game.” “I’m certainly looking forward to coming up against him.”
“It will tough because Newcastle are a good outfit.”
After doing such a wonderful job to get us promoted at the first attempt, Chris was fired in early December of 2010.
That was after we had beaten Sunderland 5-1 at home and Arsenal 1-0 away – the only time we have ever won at the Etihad Stadium – and it was a towering Andy Carroll header just before half time that got us that famous win.
To say Chris’ sacking was uncalled for and completely unjust is a huge understatement.
Chris and Colin will get a hero’s welcome when they return to St. James Park next season, with their strong Brighton & Hove Albion team.