After tomorrow’s game at home to Sheffield Wednesday we are half way through the season and today, after 22 games played, we have 49 points.
So even if we lose tomorrow and keep up the same pace through the second half of the season we will finish with 98 points – almost certain promotion.
Rafa Benitez has been interviewed in the Mail and whereas some fans may think going down in May was a good thing, Rafa doesn’t agree with that and says we could have regrouped in the Premier League.
Rafa Benitez – relegation was not good
This is what Rafa has said in the Mail:
“Some people say that relegation was a good thing.”
“But we could have regrouped in the Premier League — we could have changed things while we are winning.”
“But the positive thing now is everyone is together.”
“I think we have plenty of room for improvement.” “We are far away from 10 but not below five.”
When pressed for a number between 5 and 10 he agreed with a 7.
So there’s lots of room for improvement as far as Rafa is concerned and that’s good to hear.
The big thing Rafa is guarding against this season is complacency and over-confidence, which could very quickly derail our promotion challenge.
So headlines saying if we win our next two games tomorrow and on Friday night against Nottingham Forest then nobody can catch us – are both untrue and misleading.
We remember a headline in a local paper asking whether Newcastle would lose another game this season.
That was in the week before we lost three games in a row in eight days – after winning nine games in a row – so we have to be very careful with over-confidence and getting carried away.
It’s the one thing we have to guard against and if our players and fans continue to go into every single game knowing it will be a challenge to win the game, then we can get promoted and probably easily too.
The only thing that can stop us now is complacency and over-confidence.
Here is how the table looks before the holiday fixtures.
We are 10 points above 3rd placed Reading in an automatic promotion spot if you take into account our far superior goal difference.
That’s a points total we should be hoping to continually increase as the season progresses.