Benitez Admits He Disappeared For A Year – Praises Everything Newcastle


For Rafa Benitez to stay on at Newcastle not only meant he would visit very small grounds with facilities he hadn’t confronted since his early days as a manager, but he would literally disappear from view on thew world scene – because everything in English football is about the Premier League – everything.

Remember this is a man who had coached Real Madrid, Inter-Milan and Chelsea since leaving Liverpool in the summer of 2010 – these are all world-class clubs all of which have won the Champions League and other European trophies.

It’s much worse in England than it was back in 2009 when we were first relegated from the Premier League – you are now very much second class football citizens if you’re a second division side.

I’m not saying it’s good, but that’s the truth.

Rafa Benitez – the proud and dedicated Newcastle United manager

So it still amazes us that Rafa stayed with Newcastle and not only that, but he seemed to enjoy it and took on the challenge of how to beat clubs like Burton Albion and Rotherham United.

Yes, we got the double over both of them although Fulham, Sheffield Wednesday and Blackburn Rovers all got the double over us – and Rovers may still be  relegated.

So it wasn’t easy and in the end we made it back up immediately.

🙂

So it wasn’t all plain sailing, but Rafa’s utter determination to have his squad learn from all the mistakes they made augers well for the future.

And now we have players like Matt Ritchie, Ciaran Clark, Paul Dummett, DeAndre Yedlin, Jonjo Shelvey, Dwight Gayle and others who will know exactly what Rafa wants from them next season.

That was not true when pre-season started last summer, when we eventually had 12 new players in the squad and they all had to be quickly assimilated into the squad.

When Mr. Benitez finally looks back on his long and successful career when he retires in the (very) distant future, he could well look at this season as one of his most satisfying of all – he showed what a terrific coach he really is.

Just ask our players who he talks to all the time.

He took on a tough task that would get little or no publicity and got the job done – he got it done successfully and saved a City’s dreams too – Newcastle.

That is what amazes us most about Rafa staying at Newcastle and it shows not only his personal courage, but also  his complete and utter trust in his own ability.

But that he is also  dedicated to Newcastle United.

When he talks with owner Mike Ashley soon, Mike should realize if Rafa had left last summer, there would be no way we would now be a Premier League club.

No way at all because Rafa, his name, personality and charisma attracted top players like Dwight Gayle, Matt Richie and Issac Hayden among others to Newcastle.

Here’s what Rafa has said today, when he spoke to the Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport, principally  about the state of Serie A football.

He starts off talking about where he’s been this last year:

“I had not disappeared, I chose to stay in Newcastle because I wanted to regain that Premier League that we had tried to defend when I arrived, but I found a desperate situation.”

“Promotion is a gift to all of Newcastle. It was not purgatory. It is a season which can give satisfaction to everyone.”

“We tried to get promoted and we succeeded.”

“We had the weight of a huge responsibility, and I felt it too here that I found myself elevated to the role of idol.”

“At Inter it felt like a massive wasted opportunity, which I have pointed out many times.”

“When I first arrived, I received promises that were not kept.”

“I had laid out a path, the moment had come to change out of necessity, the average age of the squad was too high.”

“It wasn’t my fault that things ended badly and after all, I contributed to bringing the Italian Super Cup and the Club World Cup into their trophy room.”

So when we have that wonderful celebration next Sunday afternoon at the venerable St. James’ Park packed to the rafters, whether we end up winning  the Championship or not, let’s hear it for Rafa Benitez who is not only a great coach but also shows definite signs of becoming a great man.

And his best years in coaching are still ahead of him at Newcastle United Football Club.

He has definitely both mellowed and matured since he was a young coach at places like Liverpool FC and Valencia so in other words he is now  a better coach  than he was back then – by his own admission.

And wouldn’t it be great if Mike Ashley and Rafa Benitez see eye to eye on Newcastle’s future  and get on famously at their one-on-one meeting coming up – hopefully this week.

That’s what we really want to see after their meeting, which is absolutely vital to the future of the club.

🙂

Howay The Bonnie Lads!!

Comments welcome.



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107 comments so far

  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 7:52 PM

    Comment #1

    I hope this war chest is indeed magnificent. A veritable Jayne Mansfield. But in the slight chance that it’s more of a Twiggy then Rafa will have to be very selective indeed on who we bring in.

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  • Jib

    Apr 30, 2017 at 7:59 PM

    Comment #2

    GeordieTwo

    What a miss with your bubblimg positivity you have been.

    You , Jesper , BandB and for a large part Ibiza have all been absent for the season and the blog has been better for it.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:05 PM

    Comment #3

    I see 30 million in the war chest. It will be very squeaky to get decent players with that. Can we do it? He are players I think we might field in the Prem from the current team:
    Elliot (GK), Dummett (LB), Clark (CB), Lascelles (CB), Yedlin (RB), Ritchie (wing), Shelvey (MF), Hayden (MF), Gayle (striker if fit?). That’s eight or nine players. We need at least 1 striker, a number 10, another winger and 1 very good CB. I think five players might do it. But that would cost anything up to 80M??? We need to ponder this war chest issue again. Mitro on the bench, Perez sold, Gouffy gone, Mbemba on the bench, Hanley sold, Lazaar sold, Diame signed, Atsu signed and on the bench to start, Gamez moved on, Murphy moved on, Haidara sold, Sels sold. That would make a good start. That’s at least 8 moved out.

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  • Readingmag

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:07 PM

    Comment #4

    Here is an issue you cannot bring in 8/9 players in one hit…no unity/ team spirit etc.

    Bring in 4 \ 5 players max

    1 x right back-
    2 x center midfield-
    1 x left midfield
    1 x Up and coming player

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  • Tsunki

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:10 PM

    Comment #5

    Jib i would contest that as you have been ever-present. Your attempts at blog bullying are pathetic.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:11 PM

    Comment #6

    I suppose we can reduce the cost of incoming with a loan or two. Rafa’s name should allow us to do that as with Atsu. I think you’re right Readingmag. And we probably wouldn’t have the money to bring in 7 or 8 anyway. I see us finishing below 12th with somewhere in the mid to high 40’s for points. 12-14 wins and a few draws.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:13 PM

    Comment #7

    It’s the season after next that I’m more optimistic about. By then we’ll have had a season of Prem money and I hope Rafa will stay on to move us up the table and possibly win a cup. Good to see you on here Tsunki.

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  • jazzyp

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:14 PM

    Comment #8

    G2

    I see a lot more than that mate plus what we get from the sale of players.
    Darlow..Sels..Hanley..Perez..Mitro..Saviet..De jong..Thauvin..Murphy..Haidara..Lazaar should bring in around 50-55 mill plus whatever the Fat controller brings to the table

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  • AncientC

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:15 PM

    Comment #9

    cyprus // Apr 30, 2017 at 7:45 PM

    “So Craig Bellamy said we want CL football? How dare he?”

    Err, no, he said Newcastle fans expect to be in the CL places in the first season after being promoted. Details eh…

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  • Tsunki

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:20 PM

    Comment #10

    Hi G2 – jib will be devastated that you’ve resorted to the low tactic of talking football ?

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  • AncientC

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:22 PM

    Comment #11

    I cannot understand people saying they would spend the limited summer budget on a Shelvey “upgrade”. What a waste of money that would be. It would cost £25+ million to get better than Shelvey, and why upgrade on the squad’s best player.

    Weakest links in the chain need attention first.

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  • Jib

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:23 PM

    Comment #12

    Tsunki
    For blog bullying
    Read the anti Wesh posts or the child trapped in an adult body that is Mr Tuff.
    Mine is merely an opinion.
    If it doesn’t chime with your opinion.
    Tough titty – chew on it.

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  • cyprus

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:24 PM

    Comment #13

    Ancient,
    I get you. I’m a bit of a fan of Bellamy’s hesitant to criticize him. We, sounness, vilified and kicked out a passionate gem of a player.

    On thauvin, we hardly gave the lad a chance. We expected an instant HBA. First missed dribble, we groaned. Second one, we wanted him out.

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  • Tsunki

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:25 PM

    Comment #14

    Wasn’t actually a question btw 😐 just a dead emoji.

    I doubt there will be a neutron device activation at sjp in the close season. Mike will be assured of pl revenue now the parachute payment has paid dividends and worked it’s magic on the in/out columns.

    So there will be a satisfying influx of key positions and culling of the Championship fodder, but no remarkable push for glory. Consolidation will again become the touchstone. I think we will once again see ourselves being glorified as the “Financially Stable” Champions of English football.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:28 PM

    Comment #15

    Yes, it’s underhanded at best Tsunki mate :LOL: I hope you’re right jazzyp. I’m not sure what some of our players are worth. Having hardly used some of them should be well rested and ready to go. Let’s see what we get. Maximum 20M from the players I mentioned as outgoing. Diame should have read sold not signed of course. He might be the most valuable of what we part with. I would suggest a garage sale for some of the rest. We could throw in some used tea bags or something to increase the prices.

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  • cyprus

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:28 PM

    Comment #16

    Ancient,
    Yes I am ‘people’, I want a Shelvey upgrade. He isn’t the finished product, may yet become it, not saying. As he showed in the PL, even the championship, he has too many off days.
    A better and more reliable attacking MF than Shelvey is needed, for more consistent performances.

    Nufc still retain a Jekyll and Hyde persona and he’s part of that.

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  • Clematis

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:29 PM

    Comment #17

    Baaalls to all this just avoiding relegation or finishing 13th, etc. Rafa will want to finish top 7 at least.

    And I hope he does it with the nucleus of the current side.

    This is what I would do:

    Sell/bin:

    Krul, Sels, Haidara, Hanley, Murphy, Sammy, Saivet, Thauvin, Lazaar, Goof.

    Keep:

    Fat Bob, Darlow, Lascelles, Clark, Anita, Shelvey, Colback, Mitro, Perez, de Jong, Atsu, Ritchie, Mbemba, Yedlin, Gayle, Hayden, Dummett.

    Buy:

    Aden Flint, Robertson (Hull), Josh King, Charlie Taylor, Townsend.

    Loan:

    Mooy, Loftus-Cheek, Markovic

    There’s a canny 25 man squad! 🙂

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  • AncientC

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:29 PM

    Comment #18

    cyprus, I agree on Bellamy’s talents as a player. I only take exception to him perpetuating the myth that Newcastle fans are somehow deluded for wanting their club to punch it’s weight.

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  • Jib

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:29 PM

    Comment #19

    Tsunki // Hi G2 – jib will be devastated that you’ve resorted to the low tactic of talking football ?

    Freudian slip there Tsunki

    resorted is right

    It makes a change from his usual nonsense

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  • Clematis

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:30 PM

    Comment #20

    Forgot to put that sack of sheeeite Diame in the sell category!

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:32 PM

    Comment #21

    I think you’re spot on about Shelvey Ancient C but we do need replacements for players like Perez, Gouffy, probably Mitro (unless Rafa wants to give him a season at that level). Colback needs to go as certainly does Gamez who was a complete flop. The loan players are trickier. Rafa might like to give the likes of Saivet a good hard looking at along with Mbabu and Thauvin.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:34 PM

    Comment #22

    You think we would be top 7 with the players you suggested Clematis mate? I can’t see it at all. Mid table would be a huge accomplishment in the first season back as far as I can see with the owner we have.

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  • cyprus

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:34 PM

    Comment #23

    Ancient
    The thing is yesterday on beIN he said the club deserves to be challenging. I think he has a weak spot for the toon and its fans.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:38 PM

    Comment #24

    As an ever present since the blog began my findings are that the place went in to decline when Jeff ftom Benwell started posting!

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  • AncientC

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:38 PM

    Comment #25

    If the club is going to have 1 marquee signing, I am praying it is a number 10.

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:42 PM

    Comment #26

    It’s the amount of spending and the power of the top 5 or 6 clubs that is the main obstacle for us. We’ should be able to compete well with the bottom 6 or 7 teams and give everybody else the odd good game. I’m hoping for 25 points or so from the bottom 6, 15 from the middle 7, and 8-10 points from the top 6. But realistically I think it will be a bit less than that.

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:44 PM

    Comment #27

    Jazzy

    Are you going mate? Are the tickets on the town website?

    I can see a fair amount of funds being given to Rafa, but some of that will indeed be made up by player sales

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:46 PM

    Comment #28

    7 sleeps til Sunday. FCUK!

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:48 PM

    Comment #29

    G2

    You back for good now. The honey badgers are getting restless mate 😀

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  • cyprus

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:49 PM

    Comment #30

    G2
    You’re making a lot of sense man, but what happened to those off the wall posts of yours? They were quite funny. Didn’t understand them all, mind.

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  • Jail for Ashley

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:49 PM

    Comment #31

    Where are the player sales going to come from, anyone worth anything we need to keep, maybe get 4M for Colback, 15M for Mitro but I think we’ll need him.

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  • Clematis

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:49 PM

    Comment #32

    G2 @ 22:

    Well, Rafa won’t settle for mid-table so I would hope he woud be pushing for Europe.

    A proper number 10, some pace on left wing and an alternative to Gayle/Dummett/Shelvey would do me nicely and will retain that team spirit.

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  • jazzyp

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:50 PM

    Comment #33
  • cyprus

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:50 PM

    Comment #34

    Shire
    Think we may be on the same page with those simultaneous posts.

    0
  • Jail for Ashley

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:51 PM

    Comment #35

    How much will it cost us to give Riverroey away?

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  • Tsunki

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:52 PM

    Comment #36

    Jib. Behave. Welsh is reaping the rewards of his juvenile pestering of the blog with his wind up tactics. You don’t like Mr T because he sees through you like air. You are one of the worst offenders in the bullying department, I imagine there are quite a few who hesitate to post lest you nitpick and scrape through their offerings like a foraging chimp.

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  • ShirebrookToon

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:54 PM

    Comment #37

    JFA

    Errrmmm……. good question. I’ll let Rafa answer that one. 😀

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  • GeordieTwo

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:57 PM

    Comment #38

    It’s exciting to be back talking footy. I can always fall back on my impeccable sense of humour to ease the boredom if we need it. But mainly it’s back to extreme seriosity for me. A good old chin wag about players, WAGS, and a well known owner with amazingly poor judgement. I know we’re going to get impatient if we don’t fly up the table straight away but I think we had better prepare ourselves for how much better the quality of the football is in the Prem.

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  • RolandoOverhead

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:57 PM

    Comment #39

    imo the likes of Colback, Dummett and Gouff simply aren’t Premier League quality.
    Of those due back Arma hasn’t really made the grade, de Jong while uninjured for large parts of the season still is way short of his Ajax heyday, Krull is struggling to make it back to where he was.
    It’s all a bit of a bloody mess, a heck of a lot for Rafa to contemplate.

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  • investinyouthtoon

    Apr 30, 2017 at 8:57 PM

    Comment #40

    On the subject of summer targets, would love to see Aaron Ramsey, as he’s a player i’ve admired and seems to be being pushed out of arsenal. I know just wishful thinking. Anybody know when an announcement of new sponsor will be made, as I would have thought pretty soon in order to have new kits released

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