Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez was with Managing Director Lee Charnley yesterday and started to put into action some of the changes he has recommended at the club, following his nine weeks in charge at the end of last season.
Two of those areas are the Benton training facilities and the Youth Academy, so it wasn’t too surprising that Rafa and Lee were at Benton and met with Youth Academy manager Joe Joyce.
Benitez, Charnley and Joyce yesterday at Benton
Rafa has stressed there is not much time until June 28th, when players not involved with International duty will report back to training.
That’s 32 days away – just over four weeks.
Rafa is working with Lee and facilities manager Eddie Rutherford and has started work on changes to the infrastructure, equipment and various facilities at the training ground.
That’s directed towards optimizing the players’ training, recovery, rehabilitation and relaxation – and hopefully that will have a positive effect in reducing the number of injuries we have next season.
Rafa also wants improvements made to the facilities used by his coaching and backroom staff, to the medical department and to the indoor training pitch – so it will be interesting to know specifically the specific kinds of changes being implemented.
Rafa also discussed changes he wants made at the Youth Academy and met up with Joe Joyce later in the day – as shown in the photo above.
This is what Rafa has said on the Newcastle site:
“For me, the work and planning for next season never really stopped, but it was very good to get back to the training ground and the Academy today to start putting some of my plans into action.”
“We don’t have long before the pre-season starts and we can’t lose any time.” “I know that when the players report back for training at the end of June we will have made some good improvements that will really benefit the Club.”
“I said last night that we have a very tough task ahead of us in the Championship next season and we cannot underestimate the job we have to do.”
“It’s important to get as many things as we can sorted as soon as possible so we can start the new season with the best chance of success.”
“I also spent some really useful time at the Academy with Joe, as it’s very important we have the right systems in place to attract young players to the club and develop them as hopefully first team players of the future.”
“I can assure all our fans that we are doing everything we can to get things right, on and off the pitch, so we can all be proud of this great football club.”
So we should see improvements by the time the players report back for pre-season training on June 28th.
A good question is when will those changes be made at Benton to turn the facilities into world-class facilities that we were first told about those in November, 2013 when Joe Kinnear was at the club.
Maybe they will be made next summer when hopefully we are a Premier League club again?
We’re sure it’s one thing Rafa wants completed very quickly and he has already modified the original plans to what he wants when the work is finally completed.