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Rafa – Players Must Realise What It Means To Be At Newcastle

5:54 pm, Thursday, June 30th, 2016 by Dr. Ed Harrison · 42 Comments

Rafa Benitez has been interviewed on the Newcastle web-site, the day before he takes his first training session in this very important pre-season.

It will be the first full season with Rafa in charge at Newcastle and it’s an exciting time for the Geordie fans.

One of the things that Rafa will impress on his players is what is means for them to be a player at Newcastle United.

rafa benitez spurs 987

Rafa Benitez – players must understand what it means to be at Newcastle

Not only will they play in front of a packed St. James’ Park stadium – one of the most iconic stadiums in the country – but the whole of the City supports the club – in every possible way.

That’s just one of the reasons Newcastle United is such a special club – a great club – and on the rise again under Rafa Benitez.

This is what Rafa has said on the Newcastle web-site tonight:

“We have all the medicals and all the controls, and I expect to have a very good pre-season.”

“Normally, because they are professional, they’ll come back fit and we’ll try to improve the fitness of players, but also their understanding of the game, their understanding of our ideas and the way that we want to play, and try to work as a unit, as a team.”

“And after that, we’ll try to give them a little bit of what it means to be at this Club, what it means to be a player here. Now, we have to show all these things in the Championship.”

“They have to realize that we have massive support from the city – not just from the people in the stadium, but from the city – and we have to do really well to match these expectations.”

“I think that we have time and we have the right conditions to prepare the team, and be sure that we approach the first game, on the 5th August, in the best conditions.”

“It will not be quite perfect, because you need match fitness, but as close as possible to these conditions.”

“The pre-season is always special. You have a lot of players coming and players leaving so it is quite a difficult period.”

“But we have to be sure, and we are sure, that they will come with energy and they will come ready.”

Here’s the pre-season ahead of the squad in terms of the friendlies that have already been arranged.

ClubLocationDate and KickoffResult
BohemianDalymount ParkSaturday, 16th July
Won 6-0
Doncaster RoversKeepmoat StadiumWednesday, 20th July
Drew 2-2
KSC LokerenDaknamstadionSaturday, 23rd July
Won 4-0
Southend UnitedRoots Hall
Tuesday, 26th July
Won 2-0
SBV Vitesse St. James ParkSaturday, 30th July
3:00 pm
Won 3-2

We have every confidence in the Newcastle manager.

Comments welcome.

Tags: Championship · Coaching · Management · Newcastle News · Other News · Pre-season · Premier League · Press

42 responses so far ↓

  • 1 JamesToon // Jun 30, 2016 at 5:56 PM

    osing Townsend is a big blow, nobody can debate that. His directness, weak foot ability as well as his left foot and his work rate will be missed, however Matt Ritchie is the best replacement we can ask for. He may not be as direct/quick as Townsend, but he ticks all the other boxes, and is proven at both levels

  • 2 JamesToon // Jun 30, 2016 at 5:56 PM


  • 3 lesh // Jun 30, 2016 at 5:59 PM

    C’mon Rafa, the season starts here!

  • 4 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:03 PM

    Spot on
    This Townsend/Ritchie situation is proof – if any were needed – that Rafa doesn’t f@ck about.
    No gnashing of teeth or wailing , bemoaning his awful situation , just get on with it and move to plan “B”.

  • 5 Veltmann // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:04 PM

    He will punch his face late at night.

  • 6 Veltmann // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:05 PM

    Jail – unusual time for me to debate but I understand what you mean.Yes ofcourse I’m aware.I am all for Rafa revolution as well.
    If you are happy with the signings,fair enough.
    But u said it yourself that the likes of Danny Ings is a good signing.So why not went for him?
    Considering Liverpool have ample forwards,he is definitely available.Gayle is an underwhelming signing.For the sake of not to go deep in to it,
    It’s better to leave it with ‘time will tell’ and ‘reserve judgment’ opinions for now.

  • 7 JP...from The Rock // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:08 PM

    Real shame about Townsend as he was crucial to our chances of flying back up to the EPL. What’s going on with Gayle and Matt Richie?? Not a word? If it’s done why on earth take forever to announce new signings!??

  • 8 JamesToon // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:09 PM


    Why don’t you like the signings? Why would Ings come? Who would you want instead?

    I think you should trust and back Rafa mate he may make a signing that you like and not a lot of us like but regardless we must back him

  • 9 JamesToon // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:10 PM


    On the club website in an article Dwight Gayle has been confirmed he just needs to be unveiled. Matt Ritchie is flying to the toon tonight

  • 10 JP...from The Rock // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:10 PM

    I think Matt Richie could be a really good Townsend replacement and he has a wicked shot in him too. Sad we couln’t hold on to AT and have them both though.

  • 11 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:10 PM

    Yeah – but in private Veltmann

  • 12 JP...from The Rock // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:12 PM

    Jamestoon- thanks for the heads up. We need to get Richie ‘over the line’ asap. Then more quality players brought in to soften the blow of Townsend.

  • 13 SPRINGY // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:14 PM

    for what its worth mark douglas reckons gayle done and colo to leave….add your own salt to taste!lol

  • 14 Tonytoon73 // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:15 PM

    Cheeky little prick, townsend playing for spuds reserves and we make a player of him and now he is going to that shite team, pardew will probably try to groom him

  • 15 davetoon // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:17 PM

    I worry for Perez if Rafa doesn’t think he can score goals in the championship either from 9 or 10 positions.

  • 16 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:18 PM

    Just looking at how things stand so far. Sels in, Gayle on the way and probably Ritchie as well. Townsend out and probably Sissoko and Wijnaldum. About what I would have expected. Townsend was never going to stay after his performances with us. Lots of interested teams to drive up his wage demands. Sissoko may be harder to sell than he and his agent thinks. We’re getting good players in and players with attitude problems will be sold. I think Gayle with Mitrovic makes a lot of sense.

  • 17 SPRINGY // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:21 PM

    would expect to see a more bulked up, stronger perez this season,never blessed with electric pace and a bit easily knocked off the ball but has a great touch and can finish well if he could stay on his feet longer he may be able to influence more games

  • 18 Charlie in the Gallowgate // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:23 PM

    Townsend – far as I am concerned get rid if he wants to be away. hope he enjoys hoofball

  • 19 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:25 PM

    Surely Krul must be leaving as well or why bring in Sels? It’s probably the right time for him. Has lots of time left in his career if he can stay healthy. Perez will be interesting. Can he take advantage of playing in the Championship to really impress Rafa? Do bears poop in the woods? Of course he can! We still need at least 2 defensive incoming. These are harder deals to make, especially CB’s.

  • 20 SPRINGY // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:27 PM

    i think the extra 20-30 grand a week has clouded townsends vision….funny that!

  • 21 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:27 PM
    Here’s a picture of Perez bulking up for you springy mate!

  • 22 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:30 PM

    I’m not very au fait with Twatter

    Does this mean MS thinks he’ll get a move to LPool ?

  • 23 Lindisfarne // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:31 PM

    To the left, to the Dwight
    Keep it going, keep it going, s’all right
    To the left, to the Dwight
    Step it up, step it up its alright

    See how we are livin!
    See how we are livin!
    See how we are livin!
    Its all Dwight.

  • 24 bettyswallocks // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:35 PM

    Jib…….. You seem very uptight this evening, I wasn’t suggesting you were in any way out of order, I actually thought Yarpie was an appropriate insult.
    I always find that a little erotic or even kinky activity can help to relieve stress. Maybe if you ask Mr. Tuff for the loan of one of his chickens you could then use the feathers for a little erotic tickling. If you then progress to the kinky stuff you can use the whole chicken.

  • 25 SPRINGY // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:35 PM

    haha…anyone straining that hard should be careful….looks a second away from shatting himself!

  • 26 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:36 PM

    Fulham may be forced to lower their asking price for star striker Ross McCormack.
    The London club have already lost Moussa Dembele to Celtic for a nominal fee, and McCormack has a £12m release clause in his contract.
    But according to the Daily Mail that is set to expire on Friday and Slavisa Jokanovic wants funds to bring in new players.
    The paper claims the fee would be less than £12m if negotiated after the deadline – with Newcastle, Aston Villa, Sheffield Wednesday and Hull all interested.

  • 27 jazzyp // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:37 PM

    Looks like Collosh@ty has left the building as well

  • 28 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:38 PM

    Townsend disappears into mid table obscurity coached to oblivion by the famous Alan Mildew! Big mistake Andros.

  • 29 Ron Knee // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:38 PM

    “La vrai question c’est : Moussa Sissoko va-t-il prendre une douche ?”

    After Sissoko’s latest cameo:-
    “The real question is: Will Moussa Sissoko have a shower?”

  • 30 davetoon // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:41 PM

    I just hope Perez gets a chance to perform if he does stay injury free and assuming he’s not sold.
    I always thought he’d grow into a decent striker or number 10

  • 31 AncientC // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:41 PM

    I would rather have Ritchie over Townsend myself, very happy with that bit of business.

    Townsend is a ticking time-bomb when it comes to injuries and his form.

  • 32 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:42 PM

    Erotic chicken tickling bettys mate? It sounds a bit dodgy to me….. They’re nasty peckers you know…Harrumph.

  • 33 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:43 PM


    I meant to tell you this the other day.

    Although Expat has inferred that Mr Tuff in reality is a skinny little willick.

    Mention of him always puts me in mind of “Blazing Saddles”
    Mr Tuff

  • 34 Belfast // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:43 PM

    He’s leaving because he’s got himself back in the England reckoning. He probably thinks he’s no chance of staying there while playing in the championship. He would probably be right.

  • 35 Bobbybee // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:46 PM

    Talksport just announced Collo is away to his boyhood dream club in Argentina. Good luck to him. With Taylor also gone, we need another two – or one at least – CB’s. Too much flapping going on. Ritchie is quality. Gayle will score goals but will be usurped by Arma once he gets his chance. Aarons is due an injury free season hopefully and we still have the money that Gini and Sissoko will bring in if they are sold. If they don’t go, the Championship won’t know what hit them. Rafa doesn’t look like shifting on his valuation on both players so either we get the money and spend it Rafa’s way, or they stay, like it or not. We’re in the Championship now and our pulling power should have reduced, yet Rafa has already persuaded the keeper of the year in Belgium and two PL players to drop down and join us. We won’t be buying Messi any time soon, but we’re persuading very good players to join us. If Moussa and Gini go, Rafa will strengthen the squad with all that money. Far too early to be getting worried. The future is bright. Just keep the faith. 😉

  • 36 Ron Knee // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:47 PM

    “Life after Andros Townsend will start immediately after the England winger was quickly replaced by Matt Ritchie at Newcastle United.

    The AFC Bournemouth winger had his medical last night on Tyneside after flying north to complete a five-year deal at St James’ Park.

    Rafa Benitez had held talks with Townsend in the last 24 hours, but the winger was adamant he had to ply his trade in the Premier League next season.

    It was the second round of talks with Townsend this summer, but after an initial positive meeting with Benitez, the man Newcastle saved from Tottenham Hotspur’s reserve team in January opted to walk away after relegation.”

  • 37 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:47 PM

    He’s not going to get back into the England team playing for Mr. Hoofball at Palace either Belfast mate. I’ll double G Guarantee that! Harrumph!

  • 38 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:52 PM


    Do you not think Arma and Gayle are similar players and Rafa is following a plan.

    Neither of them will be able to play the full 60+ games (with cupties) required.

    He is ensuring the team doesn’t lose shape through injuries.

  • 39 GeordieTwo // Jun 30, 2016 at 6:53 PM

    Does anyone have a spare baldric I can borrow for my fongbat? I think I’m going to need it for the coming season. Sissy to Liverpool? Unbelievable. It won’t happen. Sissy needs to go back to France.

  • 40 Jib // Jun 30, 2016 at 7:02 PM

    Anyone wondring why part of our preseason is in Eire.

    The Irish Independent

    Sport Direct boss Mike Ashley is looking to expand his business in the Irish republic after acquiring Heatons and the former Boyers store in Dublin earlier this year.

  • 41 Bobbybee // Jun 30, 2016 at 7:04 PM

    Jib, absolutely marra. We’ve got a lot of games and Arma’s still young. This season will be used to prepare him for the PL next season. Rafa loves to rotate players anyway, so all our strikers will get a chance to shine. For out and out goalscoring, Arma leaves the rest standing and will play a big part in getting us promoted. Faster than Perez and Cisse and more clinical than Mitro and Gayle. Unless you’ve studied this kid I can’t expect people to believe how good he is, but hopefully this season our fans are in for such a treat. Do I expect him to play all the games? Not a chance, it could ruin him, but he will get games and once he does, the goals will flow. We now have very different strikers on our books and I expect Rafa to use them all wisely. It’s what he does after all. 😉

  • 42 giimps // Jun 30, 2016 at 8:28 PM

    Townsend is probably thinking he needs to be in the prem for his England place, his England Ally (woy) has gone now, not many other managers would choose him while playing in the 2nd tier, Woy ithink may have done and this is why he has changed his mind

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