When Kenny Dalglish was brought in to replace Kevin Keegan in early 2007, he brought in some former Liverpool players that summer and one of them was 36 year-old striker Ian Rush, who was well past his best.
Ian only stayed a year in what was a poor season for Newcastle, when we finished in 13th place on just 44 points after finishing runners-up to Manchester United in 1997 with 68 points.
Ian scored two goals for us in 14 total appearances in that season.
Ian Rush – while at Newcastle 1997-1998
That poor season cost Dalglish his job at Newcastle and he was fired in August of 1998 and replaced by Ruud Gullit who last about 12 months.
Kenny had made big mistakes when he allowed popular players like Peter Beardsley, Lee Clark, Les Ferdinand and David Ginola to leave the club the previous summer and replaced them with older players like John Barnes (34), Ian Rush (36) and Stuart Pearce (35).
Ian knows Rafa Benitez well and he thinks it’s 100% certain that Newcastle will be automatically promoted this season.
This is what Ian has said today:
“Rafa Benitez is a fantastic manager.” “I know him well.” “I played for Newcastle for a year and I think the supporters are fantastic.”
“They are a bit like Liverpool fans.” “And the reason that Rafa stayed there is because he knows those fans are similar to Liverpool fans.”
“They get behind the team and get them wins.” “They play good football. I am 100% certain he will get them back.”
“They have had a big budget for that league but you still need the manager.”
“I am pretty certain Rafa can get them back in the Premier League where they belong.”
“Every team will miss them in the Championship because of the away support they’ll bring.”
“They do deserve to be in the Premier League because of their crowds home and away.”
We probably need another 10 to 11 wins in our final 17 games to ensure we are automatically promoted.