It would have been much better if Newcastle could have survived in the Premier League last season and then we would still be in the top league in England and getting some publicity.
In the Championship it’s hard to find much news on Newcastle when you look online at national newspapers like the Mirror, Mail, Telegraph and the like.
There may be something right at the bottom of their seven pages of coverage of the Premier League – maybe.
We hadn’t realized just how much it’s all about the Premier League in England as much as this season when we are not in the top division.
Rafa Benitez with the players in training
Newcastle are doing very well right now and we are top of the Championship and being down below for a year – as long as it’s just a year – doesn’t mean we have wasted a full year.
Rafa has already done some big things at the club and made plenty of changes.
He’s cleared out all the dead wood in the squad in the summer – something the club resisted doing for far too long.
Rafa’s made upgrades to the pitches by installing 4G technology over the old and outdated 3G pitches and that seems to be paying off with so few injuries this season.
He’s also made changes inside in the configuration of the Benton training grounds and look for more and bigger changes there in the summer.
Rafa has also made what looks to be some stellar buys in the transfer market and we’ll just mention Dwight Gayle, Matt Ritchie, Ciaran Clark and Isaac Hayden as some really terrific buys for the money.
Each of these players have improved this season under Rafa’s expert coaching.
So Rafa has already made some big changes at the club since he arrived in March and of course we did make a profit of £31M in the summer transfer market – so the coffers are in good shape.
Rafa has also inspired the Geordie fans and we regularly get full houses at the home games like the 52,000 there for the 4-0 win against Birmingham on Saturday afternoon.
The away ticket allocations are also sold out very quickly.
Assuming we do get promoted back to the Premier League this season this year will not have been wasted and Newcastle can then bring in some top players this summer to further strengthen the squad for an assault at the top of the Premier League.
The players we have now all know what’s expected of them and what Rafa wants from them – something that would take time whichever league we were in.
And there are good signs that the big clubs spending stupidly high transfer fees on good players while the smaller clubs are spending a lot more wisely is leveling things off in the Premier League and making it a lot more competitive.
And the fact the Leicester City won the Premier League last season after struggling mightily against relegation the season before gives us all hope.
It’s not beyond the realm of possibility that if all goes well this season Newcastle United could be back challenging in the top six of the Premier League next season.
And just think – we’d be back in the national papers again and be able to see the games live on television.
That’s the hope – but first things first – and we need to win as many games as we can as soon as we can – and ensure we are promoted this season.
Then the dream can continue.