Rafa Benitez Could Appoint This Assistant Manager In Summer


We have written a few times before about Rafa Benitez’ former assistant manager 54 year-old Pako Ayestaran – and suggested he would be great for Newcastle – he is such a passionate man and was so successful with Rafa Benitez in the early years of his career as a manager.

Pako was Rafa’s right hand man for just over 11 years from 1996 when he worked with Rafa at Osasuna before finally leaving as the Liverpool assistant manager in 2007 after Rafa and he had a big bust up.

Pako Ayestaran and Rafa Benitez at Liverpool

Pako worked with Rafa at Osasuna, Extremadura, Tenerife, Valencia and Liverpool before finally leaving Benitez in 2007.

They won the Europa League with Valencia in 2004, beating Marseille 2-0 in Gothenburg and more famously they won that famous Champions League final in 2005 against AC Milan in Istanbul.

That was the greatest comeback in European club competition finals when Liverpool were 3-0 down at half time and they won on penalties, after the score after extra time was 3-3.

They also won two La Liga titles together with Valencia and the FA Cup with Liverpool.

Pako is out of a job at the moment (sign him up!) and he talked yesterday to talkSPORT and this is some of that he had to say:

“We did have a fall-out but this happens in every marriage! I think that we have lasted longer than many couples.”

“We were together for 12 years. We keep in touch and it was last week the last time we talked about personal things.”

“To be honest I am very pleased about how well he is doing. He is a great manager and he has always delivered, wherever he has been.”

“Now with Newcastle he’s doing the same. I hope he keeps going at the same pace and they get promoted. It looks like that is going to happen.”

“We analysed why we were losing 3-0 against Milan at half time and tried to correct a few positions.”

“Rafa is not so emotional. He tried to be focused on what is happening on the pitch. That’s what he did at half-time.”

“If you remember Didi Hamann came on – and we had a big problem with Kaka playing in behind the midfield.”

“Once we resolved this gap between the midfield, we knew we needed an early goal. It happened and we took it from there.”

Rafa is now just concentrating on getting promotion and will not do too much else until Newcastle are officially promoted.

But in the summer if we are a Premier League club again, it would be exciting for Newcastle fans if Rafa paired up with Pako again and made him the Assistant manager at Newcastle.

After all Ian Cathro has not been replaced.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.



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5 comments so far

  • sing in the corner

    Mar 31, 2017 at 8:21 AM

    Comment #1

    Don’t want to count my chickens but I have to say the prospect of Rafa managing us in the PL, with what will evolve as his own team, is mouthwatering to say the least! Whatever way you look at it Rafa has not been in his area of expertise, managing in the Championship.
    I’m not over ambitious about next term. We need to build a new team almost. That will take time to get all the right pieces. Mid table, consolidate, acquire and grow.
    ..with respect of course, we have still got to do the job over the next couple of months. (Over excited!)

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  • martoon

    Mar 31, 2017 at 8:28 AM

    Comment #2

    One thing I’ve noticed is that early in the season we were trying something different and imaginative from dead ball situations especially corners. Now we seem to have reverted to type of lumping the ball into the box. I can’t help wondering if this was Cathro’s ‘baby’?

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  • sing in the corner

    Mar 31, 2017 at 8:35 AM

    Comment #3

    As long as we don’t try the old (Fulham game) hit-it-to-the-near-post-defender then they break 3 on 2 and score routine I’m not too worried 🙂

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  • Laurent Robert 32

    Mar 31, 2017 at 9:27 AM

    Comment #4

    Martoon, I think it’s the Mikel guy who does the set pieces. Black hair, glasses.

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  • martoon

    Mar 31, 2017 at 9:32 AM

    Comment #5

    Laurent Robert 32 – Cheers, I’m sure you’re right mine was just a wild theory. Whatever the reason though we don’t try many alterative corners/free kecks – it may well be a confidence thing.

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