Benitez Has His First Big Challenge For Next Season

News today in the Chronicle that Rafa Benitez is looking at ways of how he can keep Moussa Sissoko at Newcastle next season, as we go down to compete in the Championship.

It was noticeable that Rafa liked the way Moussa set an example in training during h nine weeks Rafa was managing Newcastle last season.

When Benitez dropped Jonjo Shelvey he made Moussa captain and certainly his performances improved for Newcastle after the 26 year-old had a fairly poor season for the team.

But news that Sissoko is one of the players Benitez wants to keep at the club, even though there have already been some big clubs interested in the player.

moussa sissoko rafa benitez spurs

Rafa Benitez and Moussa Sissoko

Arsenal seem willing to pay £10M for him although the figure Newcastle would want is £20M and it’s unlikely many clubs would come in with that type of offer.

With relegation and the likelihood that Newcastle can bounce straight back up to the Premier League, Benitez doesn’t want to lose any players he sees as vital to the core of the Newcastle team he is starting to build on Tyneside.

It was not good news when L’Equipe had a piece on each one of the players selected for  the 23 French squad for Euro 2016 and it said about Sissoko that he had no intention of playing in the Championship next season, but that input was likely provided by his agent.

It would appear that Rafa will have his work cut out to persuade Moussa to stay, although the manager did say he had talked to a number of players about the possibility of staying next season and he had received some positive feedback from them.

We assume Moussa was one of them, but to a large extent it will depend on what Moussa himself  thinks and whether he believes in the Rafa revolution beginning at Newcastle.

Moussa has always talked about wanting to play for a club in the Champions League, so maybe he’s already at that club, with Rafa Benitez wanting to take Newcastle into the top four of the Premier League as soon as he can.

Since Moussa joined Newcastle from Toulouse in January three years ago he’s played 133 games with 12 goals and  19 assists for the club.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

12 comments so far

  • Jail for Ashley

    May 29, 2016 at 8:47 AM

    Comment #1

    I’m happy with whatever Rafa decides to do with them but I think Jaanmat and Sissoko deserve a season in the Championship.

  • G

    May 29, 2016 at 8:49 AM

    Comment #2

    For what its worth, I would let him go, not on the cheap though.

  • Jib

    May 29, 2016 at 8:55 AM

    Comment #3

    Jail and MrTuff
    Scrupulously examine and check every word I post.
    Should I be complimented or worried ?


    Blackley the Honour School of Literae Humaniores, involving the study of Greek and Roman history and literature and philosophy know as “Greats”is studied at Oxford.

    THE Greats at Cambridge ha ha ha

  • Munster Mag

    May 29, 2016 at 9:00 AM

    Comment #4

    Id happily sell the slackers and so wud most fans i think. Jail rafa was let down by his players but his tactics v sunderland at home were poor and villa too. Sky commented how few we were putting up for corners as an example. Who do u think sunderland are …madrid. we lost 6 in a row?? Ffs we were at home to the makems and we didnt lay a glove on them most of the game because we were too busy getting our guys into defensive positions and putting sissoko on the left wing! I like rafa but if you cant look beyond making him into a faultless god of football dont blame me. I look at reality not reputation and tactically we were poor and hugely under motivated for villa ans sunderland. Any yes the players should hang heads too but dont worry they wont.

  • Ron Knee

    May 29, 2016 at 9:01 AM

    Comment #5

    What did you read, Jib?

  • lochinvar

    May 29, 2016 at 9:01 AM

    Comment #6

    The Venger Boys are having a laugh at £10m for Sissoko to sit on their bench . Try £20m and we can talk. He would do well to check out how much Ba, Enrique and others have played after their dream moves, while their bank accounts rack up. That apart there’s so much money sloshing around with the London and Manx clubs that it’s obscene and it’s akin to protection money – they are buying their place in the Chinese Super League of tomorrow.
    Or he could listen to Rafa, set an example and have a field day playing football in the Championship. Reality is that apart from the top four or five clubs in Prem and the bottom end of the Championship then all the clubs in between are the real remaining football clubs and not sporting franchises . Maybe that’s what we are ( thanks to Sports Direct ) but our soul is intact which can’t be said of Manure or Arsenal .
    Ho hum.

  • Jail for Ashley

    May 29, 2016 at 9:04 AM

    Comment #7

    You think too much of yourself, the fact that you’re the first to jump on anyone’s mistakes make your numerous gaffes to easy to point out, of course I was aware of the mackems score as we played Villa, my phone gives automatic updates on any scores. Footy know nowt meh!

  • expatmag

    May 29, 2016 at 9:04 AM

    Comment #8

    Do you think it could be possible just for one day at least where we could discuss football without the childish nit picking????????,

  • Jib

    May 29, 2016 at 9:05 AM

    Comment #9

    One hell of a comment on the strength of French football
    Not one striker in Deschamps squad plays in France !
    Antoine Griezmann (Atletico Madrid), Dimitri Payet (West Ham United), Anthony Martial (Manchester United), Kingsley Coman (Bayern München), Olivier Giroud (Arsenal), Andre-Pierre Gignac (UANL Tigres)

  • Jib

    May 29, 2016 at 9:06 AM

    Comment #10

    Ron Knee
    The Dandy , Beano and on occasion the Topper

  • danmuamua

    May 29, 2016 at 9:17 AM

    Comment #11

    Sign any of these players

    Jake Bidwell
    Lewis Dunk
    Danny Bathe
    Dominic Iorfa
    Jon Flanagan

    Alan Judge
    Will Hughes
    Lewis Cook
    Dale Stephens
    Teddy Bishop
    Connor Coady
    Nathan Redmond
    Tom Ince
    Jack Grealish

    Britt Assombalonga
    Ross McCormack
    Fernando Forestieri

  • toonfan76

    May 29, 2016 at 9:23 AM

    Comment #12

    Moussa needs to repay us for the dross he dished out last season, he owes us as he contributed to our downfall so he should show some loyalty and help us come straight back up. Don’t think he will though.


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