The Newcastle United Blog

News and Commentary On Newcastle United By Ed Harrison, A Proud Exiled Geordie And Lifelong Fan

The Newcastle United Blog header image 2
Banner created by Reilly - one of our readers
Howay The Lads!!

Benitez Lays Down The Law With Wantaway Players

9:08 am, Tuesday, June 14th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 48 Comments

It’s well known that Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez wants to keep as much of the squad as he can for next season, so he can basically have a stronger squad next summer than we had for last season, when we were relegated.

So the building up of the quality of the squad begins now, even though we are in the English second division.

The last thing Benitez wants to happen is to have the side dismantled by having all our best players leave the club.

rafa benitez may 25 2016

Rafa Benitez – we must have a strong enough squad

That will mean we will have to bring better players in next summer when we do get promoted back to the Premier League (hopefully).

Much better to keep the squad in place – as much as possible – and have the players play in the second division for just one solitary season.

But that’s always the big danger when a club is relegated, that top players leave, because they don’t want to play in England’s second division.

This is what Rafa has said today:

“I would like to keep as much of the squad as I can because my players know what I want to do,” 

“Maybe there will be some who we will say ‘fine, you can go’ and it will be good for the club and player.”

“There might be some that have to stay and they may not be happy, but that is the way it has to be.”

“We have to make sure we have a strong squad.”  “It would be the ideal situation, if all the players said ‘we want to make sure we go up next season’.”

“But in modern football with so much money, it’s impossible to control agents.” “You have to accept that these things happen, that some will leave.”

“We need to make sure the squad is strong enough.”

Notice that Rafa is already getting the message out to his players, before the vast majority of them report back for pre-season training two weeks today.

The two players most likely to leave the club this summer are Moussa Sissoko and Gini Wijnaldum, but it looks like Newcastle have put a whopping £20M and £30M respectively on their heads.

So if they do leave we get a massive amount for them,  but we will also need to spend some of that money to replace them this summer.

Rafa wants a very strong squad for next season – not money in the bank.

That’s only one of the big changes at Newcastle, since he agreed to stay on at Newcastle last month.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

Tags: Contracts · Financial Fair Play · Financials · Newcastle News · Transfer News and Rumours

48 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:15 AM

    En Rafa confiamos!

  • 2 Graeme // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:18 AM

    “Le Sulk” Sissoko is probably going to be such a pain in the rump, it’s better for the club to get shot of him – we don’t need the disruption. Given his utter lack of effort, last season, get the best offer possible for him and use the money to strengthen with a more suitable replacement.

    I would keep winegum for the season we will be down, he has all the skill, effort and ability we will need.

  • 3 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:31 AM

    I suspect Rafa has been given a budget for buying plus whatever we make on selling players. So it might be advantageous to sell at least one of these to generate funds. Personally I think sell Wijnaldum and try and keep Sissoko as he’ll do well in the Championship but these days if a player is determined to go then it is difficult to keep him!

  • 4 croftus5678 // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:32 AM

    @2 graeme

    imo he has to play better for his international career to get noticed and for suitors to pay the big money for him as it will be much harder for him from the championship.
    if he makes a fuss benny will drop him so he’s stuck and to our benefit imo.

  • 5 Rotonda heights // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:36 AM

    mr tuff

    all a bit kettle pot black with friend jib.

  • 6 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:39 AM

    Why are so many so hard on Sissoko when so many let us down, it’s obvious that Rafa wants him so surely our attitude should be that if he is good enough for Rafa then he’s good enough for me, unless of course you think that you know better than Rafa !!!!!!

  • 7 Jib // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:41 AM

    Oh dear Waikato /Chiefs humped Wales.
    40 – 7 !

  • 8 Jib // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:43 AM

    I knew it was last years info but nothing has changed this year.

  • 9 Graeme // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:45 AM

    Spoof – if Rafa actually wants him, thats the end of the argument mate.
    Will Sissoko respond and deliver what he is capable of, week in, week out? Who knows – In Rafa we trust.

  • 10 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:46 AM

    It might have just a little bit to do with his interviews CONSTANTLY talking about a move to a bigger club.

  • 11 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 9:56 AM

    Spoof @6 – I think it is because he was particularly bad in a lot of games – I can remember him being booed off when he was subbed. Plus always going on about wanting to be at a CL club doesn’t exactly endear himself to fans!

  • 12 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:00 AM

    Incidentally JFA I notice you said you’ve got your season tickets – if you can use public transport to get to matches then it is well worth getting a ‘Magpie Mover’ ticket for £20 which are valid for 3 hours before & after all home games.

  • 13 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:00 AM


    Errrr, no you didnt. You admitted as much in your first reply to TUFF.

  • 14 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:02 AM

    On the subject of Sissoko and Wijnaldum, neither wants to be here so sell them for as much as we can get and replace them with players who have the heart to match their ability.

  • 15 Thump // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:04 AM

    JFA with a season ticket? What has the world come to?!

    …yeah, me too.

  • 16 Jib // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:06 AM

    Australians clearly don’t “do” sarcasm.

  • 17 Graeme // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:08 AM

    Latest Sissoko rumour is that Hamburg have put a bid in of €12 million for him!!

  • 18 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:08 AM


    maybe not……but we can point out a dead set liar when we see one.

  • 19 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:12 AM


    Old news mate. I doubt they could afford our asking price for him which appears to be double what they are offering.

  • 20 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:14 AM


    I agree he was particularly bad in a lot of games and we as all teams do need consistency, but I will ask you to think about what I am going to say, he has been consistently good…………………..when played in his natural position which sadly has been very rare.

    Season before last we had a nightmare start and then Pardew changed it around a bit, he took Sissoko off the wing and played him centrally having Ameobi and Obertan playing wide, we done well got great results and Sissoko was really good week in and week out, obertan then got injured and Pardew left, Carver came in and put Sissoko back on the wing as did McClaren when he took over, he isn’t a winger and when Rafa came he could see that Sissoko isn’t a winger so he gave Sissoko another opportunity in his best position which is central and once again Sissoko was putting in good performances on a regular basis.

    So as I say just think about for a while and you will see that those two occasions are the only times when Sissoko was played regularly in his best position and on both occasions he was regularly putting in good performances, he is good and he is consistent but not as a winger, thankfully Rafa can see this and plays him centrally where he gets good performances from him, sadly he does want to go so it may be a case of Rafa coming to late, but is Rafa wrong about him, most fans seem to think so, but I certainly don’t.

  • 21 Jib // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:16 AM

    Liar ?
    Oh dear !

  • 22 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:20 AM

    I get the Metro to games anyway so it’s a good idea, I”ll probably get to more than half the games so will still save money. Thump, have you got a ticket a well.

  • 23 Graeme // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:27 AM

    Spoof, I would agree with you.
    If Rafa believes he can get him to perform, week in, week out and wants to keep him, I doubt many will deride the decision. Its more the fact that Sissoko believes he’s too good for us and is shooting his mouth off. That on the back of a pretty poor effort last season, all told!!

  • 24 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:30 AM


    Yep……oh dear to you

  • 25 hibbitt // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:32 AM

    Jail for Ashley

    very good advice from martoon
    i live in yarm so drive to my brothers in gosforth and park at his house and we get the metro in
    the metro is very good value when compared with the cost of parking and thats if you can find a spot

  • 26 carl // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:34 AM

    To pretend otherwise is not only missing the point, it’s positively Orwellian in its selective blindness.

  • 27 expatmag // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:34 AM


    Pity McLaren isnt still manager. You could have got a lift in with him……lol

  • 28 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:43 AM


    his attitude and what he says, how he behaves could be better, a hell of a lot better, he’s as bad as Alan Pardew, when ever either speak or spoke as the case is I just cringed and wished that they would just shut the f— up, but I would rather have a mouth piece who can play rather than a really loveable bloke who can’t, as it stands with Sissoko we do have a mouth piece and sadly he hasn’t played well enough, however I do honestly believe that he has been badly mismanaged and I am sure that we would see him at his best with Rafa as he would be played correctly, but as far as his whinging and his attitude and his desire to go and how he is going about it then, sorry Moussa mate as much as I rate you I cannot defend you on that score, so yes he is a tosser but even so it would be a shame to lose him just when we have the right man in charge to get the best out of him.

  • 29 manxpie // Jun 14, 2016 at 10:59 AM

    Something tells me, don’t know what it is, in fact I’m probably totally wrong but I think rafa might want a strong squad next season
    spoof sisko didn’t play well in the center at all he was consistently shite there as I remember couldn’t tackle, pass and his first touch is shocking plus never getting his head up and ending up losing it

  • 30 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:11 AM

    JFA – If you do then you can then buy them off the NUFC website but they are really tricky to find – you have to look in the ‘buy tickets, membership’ section and they are there (not obvious to me). Doing it this way means you don’t pay postage whereas other methods do.

  • 31 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:11 AM

    And luckily I don’t have to drive the Metro on the way back 😀

  • 32 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:13 AM

    What ever happens to Sissoko at last we now have a manager that we can trust to do the right thing rather than a patsy who is being told what to do.

  • 33 Jail for Ashley // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:14 AM

    I wonder if Rafa sorts websites as well, couldn’t find it anywhere on the site where to download the direct debit form, had to Google it and download it separate from the site.

  • 34 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:15 AM

    Manxpie. Spoof – I tend to agree with manxpie apart from the last few games under Rafa as far as I can recall when Sissoko did play in the centre he was hopeless and can’t tackle to save his life – his occasional good game was on the wing.

  • 35 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:15 AM


    obviously your looking at a different Sissoko to the one that Rafa looks at as Rafa made him captain and he clearly wants him to stay, whether he does stay is another matter but Rafa clearly wants him too, otherwise he wouldn’t put an asking price which is twice the figure what clubs are supposedly offering for him ??????????

  • 36 martoon // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:17 AM

    JFA – I can’t remember sorting out the website being mentioned when Rafa was negotiating a deal 😉

  • 37 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:21 AM


    true an occasional good game was on the wingout of how many, quite a few and never has he been consistent, you accept that in the centre under Rafa he did do much better, look back at the time which I referred to earlier, you will see he was good week in week out, he’s not a winger, if Rafa came out and said that he was going to build a team around Sissoko who would be played as a winger then I would want him sold, he is useless as a winger, 4/5 good games as a winger in 2.5 seasons is no good, no good at all, but only twice has he ever had a run playing through the middle, please check it up and you will see that he was good.

  • 38 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:24 AM

    Jail @32

    very true, and about bloody time !

  • 39 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:28 AM

    So what’s the view on these alleged asking prices, £30m for Wijnaldum and £20m for Sissoko, personally I think both of them are good players but are they that good ?, are we genuinely trying to price them out of the market and force them to stay or are we just trying to maximise what we get for them to give us a bigger kitty ?

  • 40 even the stevens // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:39 AM

    Hello everyone! First time poster here, and I want to start if off with huge optimism! I say first time promotion – by winning the league – also a massive cup run. Sunderland fans laugh when I say this, but why not?? If Rafa strengthens the squad this summer surely with palace reaching a final, that just proves we can do it from the second tier! Come on!!!!!!

  • 41 Mister Tuff // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:44 AM

    Jib Jibberish wrong again. Your contention that nothing has changed in respect of the transfer window dates from last year to this year is again not correct.
    The English summer window is traditionally from July 1st to August 31st. However last year August 31st fell on a Bank Holiday – it is in the rules that the transfer close date MUST be on a working day – ie it excludes Sundays and Bank Holidays and if this occurs the deadline in then extended into the next working day.
    Obviously this year 31st August is on a Wednesday – so the window will not be extended into September.
    Therefore it follows that the transfer window dates are NOT the same as last year.

  • 42 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:54 AM

    As long as we have a god window it doesn’t really matter what the dates are !

  • 43 Spoof // Jun 14, 2016 at 11:58 AM

    Interesting choice by the fans !

  • 44 Mister Tuff // Jun 14, 2016 at 12:00 PM

    Spoof – indeed – I hope there are some decent signings well before the last day. So hopefully there will be no last minute mayhem.

  • 45 Thump // Jun 14, 2016 at 12:06 PM

    @JFA: Yeah, me and my mate went up on the 6th to grab two in the Gallowgate. I feel like I’m not supporting the team but that I’m actually just giving Ashley some positive reinforcement.

    “Good boy, you made a correct decision.”

  • 46 cyprus // Jun 14, 2016 at 12:41 PM

    I guess we have to accept that our best players will want out… rebuild required anyway. We must get rid of the Deadwood as well.

    Ed, the challenge not to write Rafa or benitez in an article remains. Come on man it’s doable. You can even get around it if you must mention him. E.g. ‘our great manager’ etc.

  • 47 lesh // Jun 14, 2016 at 4:16 PM

    Rafa ought to make it clear that if no acceptable offers are received by the season’s start, then those players go nowhere! I think we’re all aware of the dangers attached to selling on deadline day when there’s no replacement in place. Charnley’s instincts won’t like that but, tough!

  • 48 stephen1971 // Jun 15, 2016 at 6:56 AM

    even if rafa does want rid of sissoko then he,s not going to say so is he ? he,s wanting big money for him so he,s got to make him look like he,s a big asset, get rid imo

previous post: Italian Clubs Told How Much Wijnaldum Will Cost Them

next post: Benitez Would Prefer To Sell This Player This Summer