Rafa Benitez Pleased For Newcastle Star

Rafa is giving his full support to Aleksandar Mitrovic, who finally scored for us again and it was certainly a vital goal and the winning goal at Wolves on Saturday.

Rafa does have Dwight Gayle fit again for the game at Norwich tomorrow night and we should see the 20 goal goalscorer at some point tomorrow night – and we have him starting in the side at Carrow Road.

Aleksandar Mitrovic celebrates after scoring just before half time at Wolves

Today Rafa has again praised the Serbian striker who had to put up with some tough physical marking from the Wolves defenders.

Mitrovic should also have had a penalty in that first half – although Matt Ritchie was in the side and would have taken it.

It was Mitro’s 6th goal of the season, which he scored just before half time and the first since last October, so that will do his confidence the world of good.

This is what Rafa has said about the 22 year-old striker today as reported in the Chronicle:

“I am pleased for him and pleased for the team.” “When a striker scores goals he’s always happy.”

“Murphy was scoring goals, Gayle was scoring goals and now Mitro is scoring so I am happy.”

“He was unlucky not to receive a penalty. Before it was a penalty.”

“Afterwards they were complaining, but if they had given the penalty in the first place we might be talking about another thing.”

“On the TV they said it could be a penalty but the ref said it wasn’t.”

“We can’t change what he did – with the penalty decision and with the foul.”

Tomorrow night is yet another test for the lads – another win would be absolutely terrific!

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Comments welcome.

14 comments so far

  • Lindisfarne

    Feb 13, 2017 at 10:52 PM

    Comment #1


    as the records will say!

  • dem

    Feb 13, 2017 at 10:52 PM

    Comment #2

    All this praise for Mitrovic surely means he’s going to start tomorrow?

    Rafa Bingo –

    Yedlin Lascelles Clark Dummett
    Shelvey Hayden
    Ritchie Perez Gouffran


  • Lindisfarne

    Feb 13, 2017 at 11:07 PM

    Comment #3

    4231 with wide attacking full backs, a front four in a diamond and Shelvey dropping back into a midfield three when defending. I forgot to say that IMO Clarke should be rested ready for the Villa game.

  • firebug666

    Feb 13, 2017 at 11:23 PM

    Comment #4

    Rafa bingo Lineup






    Gonna be a tough game, but they play quite open and attacking, recon our pace and Shelvey’s passing will unlock them. going for 0-3 Toon win. Gayle to come on in the second half and score one.

  • chicousa

    Feb 13, 2017 at 11:42 PM

    Comment #5

    Rafa bingo confirmed lineup

    Yedlin Lascelles Hanley Dummett
    Shelvey Hayden
    Richie Diame Atsu

  • chicousa

    Feb 13, 2017 at 11:54 PM

    Comment #6

    I think Rafa often praises people he plans on not playing. Last week we heard all sorts of praise from Rafa re: Mbemba….only to see him not even make the bench for Saturday’s match. Has happened earlier in season when he has praised Hanley and Lazaar. I would like to see Mitro start, but am in doubt whether he will even make the squad traveling to Norwich!

  • Mister Tuff

    Feb 14, 2017 at 12:42 AM

    Comment #7

    Rafa Bingo line-up.

    Yedlin Lascelles Clark Dummett
    Shelvey Hayden
    Richie Diame Atsu

    2 – 1 to the Toon.


    Feb 14, 2017 at 1:49 AM

    Comment #8

    rafa bingo line up
    hoping haydens fit,as colback gave away far to many freekicks in dangerous areas,if haydens not fit would rather mbemba was given a game….just to see what he can do.

  • jimmysmith

    Feb 14, 2017 at 2:38 AM

    Comment #9

    Colback was coming back from injury. It will be expected that he will take a couple of games to get back up to speed, before returning to the influential player he has been all season for us. I like the idea of playing Mbemba in there, but that would have to have been explored long before now for him to figure. If he’s in the midfield mix at all he’ll remain behind both Colback and Hayden for the run in at this late stage of the season.

  • chicousa

    Feb 14, 2017 at 2:40 AM

    Comment #10

    Totally agree re: Colback’s liabilities and Mbemba as a DM. Mbemba plays the DM position for his national team and has the quickness, aggressiveness and tackling skills to make for a good holding defensive mid.

  • Chancel My MBembaship

    Feb 14, 2017 at 4:36 AM

    Comment #11

    Despite my name, I’m not a major Mbemba fan, but I’d like to see him given a chance in the DM position between now and the end of the season. Could be a revelation for us there and he obviously knows what’s required in that role after his AFCON games. Worth a shot.

  • cyprus

    Feb 14, 2017 at 6:54 AM

    Comment #12

    Forgot to mention, is it too late? The right wing is set: yedlin, Ritchie. But more firepower is needed on the left: go with Dummett and Ameobi. The goal will come from that side!

    Play Mitro up front, with the rest sorted out almost by default. Murphy can get his 20′, or Gayle if he’s OK. Of course you can choose any two of those good CBs, use a hat.

    In the middle, give Perez, gouffran, Hayden, colback each a half. Keep em all active and happy.

    You’re welcome 🙂

  • Mag52

    Feb 14, 2017 at 7:30 AM

    Comment #13

    My team v Norwich is:

    Yedlin, Lascelles, Clarke, Dummett,
    Shelvey, Hayden,
    Ritchie, Perez, Gouffran,

    The defence picks itself. Hayden in for Colback, and Perez to take over from Diame. I prefer Murphy to Mitro, but expect Rafato go with Mitro. Gayle to get 15mins at the end, if Mitro doesn’t get sent off.

  • toontaff2

    Feb 14, 2017 at 7:56 AM

    Comment #14

    Rafa Bingo Line-up:


    1-5 Toon!!


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