When you hear somebody speak about their passion – whatever it is – be it singing, maths, running, swimming, astronomy or even football management – it’s always very interesting and commands your attention.
That’s because the person loves what they are talking about and they always come across very interesting and they think it’s exciting what they are talking about – it’s their passion.
And you can see that clearly in Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez.
It’s quite obvious he loves doing what he’s doing and especially (hopefully) at Newcastle, where the fans have always been football daft and now have a football manager who eats, sleeps and breathes football.
That’s very appropriate.
A happy looking Rafa Benitez before the game last night
Rafa seems a master at tactics and he used three different match plans to get two wins and a draw in three successive away games – at Brighton, Huddersfield and Reading – teams who are all in the top five in the league.
Some local journalists are saying now it’s matter of when we get promoted and not if.
But given that catastrophes and disasters that have overtaken Newcastle these last three years, we will celebrate only when we are technically promoted – and then we’ll celebrate big time!!!
We may even talk about winning the Champions League next season.
Rafa has given an expert summation and review of what happened in the game last night in Berkshire and he comes across extremely pleased with his players who really seem to be able to deliver on what exactly Rafa wants from them.
It’s a very good time to do that.
Here’s what Rafa has said – as reported in the Chronicle – when he was asked about last night’s 0-0 draw at the Madejski Stadium:
“It is important to be solid. This team is consistent and knows what to do.” “We have to carry on with that. We can draw games too, but we have chances to win in every game.”
“At Reading we had 13 attempts and they had just 6. That is the main thing – we create chances.” “We made a couple of mistakes at the start of the second half and gave them a little bit of hope.”
“When they made changes and played with wing-backs they switched things a bit.” “We were a little bit tired but to be fair to play three games in a row.”
“Especially the midfielders, it was not easy for them because they have to go to press and cover.”
“The others have to counter attack and you could see that we were a little bit short of legs in some cases.”
“We knew that they like to keep the ball but in the first half they had just two attempts on target and we had four but ours were clear chances.”
“That is what we are looking for.” “If we finish in the top two then yes the Brighton result was pivotal.”
“If we don’t I will not think about them. But these 7 points have been against the top four teams in the table.”
“It means we are strong enough to carry on. However, every game is different.”
Rafa sounds really pleased with his players.