It seems the Newcastle players just love working for manager Rafa Benitez and we’ve had many interviews from the players this summer lauding just how good he is with them.
Rafa’s training sessions are strict and serious, but they also seem to be carried out in such a way that the players enjoy them and can see the value of them.
Matt Ritchie with Rafa Benitez earlier this summer
Rafa also has tactical sessions with the players, where he explains in detail how the various formations will work and the detailed responsibilities of the players in the various positions.
Matt Ritchie raved about Rafa when the former Bournemouth player first arrived at the club this summer and the Scottish International was interviewed on the Football League Preview Show on BBC Radio Five Live last night.
It seems Matt is still excited about working with Rafa as he had this to say:
“He’s been fantastic. I can’t speak highly enough of him,”
“The training has been top draw and he has an aura around him. He demands respect and the sessions are very good.”
“Everyone is happy.”
There’s a huge “feel good” factor surrounding the club this summer because of the Rafa Benitez effect and the exciting project he has going at Newcastle.
But the proof of the pudding is in the eating and the Championship season gets under way in earnest at Fulham on Friday night.
We have to try to get off to a very good start with a win and it seems the only player not available for that game through injury is Siem de Jong.
So it will be the strongest side Rafa can play.
Howay The Lads!!