Rafa Benitez Talks About The Perfect Response From His Players


Rafa Benitez looked a little uncomfortable during the game yesterday.

That’s not because we were in trouble or anything like that – but it was evident he was still suffering from the after-effects of his surgery he had during the International break.

But he has overseen Newcastle’s third win in five games, and that’s a lot better than when we were last in the Premier League with Steve McClaren.

Two years ago we had to wait for the 9th game before we finally got a win – a 6-2 drubbing of visiting Norwich City – and both teams were relegated along with Aston Villa a year last May.

But Rafa was happy after the game with Newcastle now in 4th place in the league table.

Jamaal Lascelles heads home the winner yesterday after 68 minutes

Hang on a minute – let’s just bite my hand to make sure that’s true and that I’m still alive.

Ouch,  that really hurt – well it must be true then.

🙂

The manager – a world-class manager no less – was asked after the game if that was the perfect response he had demanded from his players.

This is how he answered that question:

“Yes, I think so.”

“We knew before the game that it was a difficult game and we had to approach the game with the mentality that we did, working very hard.”

“Trying to do things in the way we wanted to do to be sure that we could be strong in defense and then create something in attack.”

“It was not easy sometimes because they are a good team, but we knew more or less it could be like this and at half-time, we were talking about that, so the game-plan was clear to carry on with the same idea.”

“We had the chances to finish the game early and after, they had a chance and it could have been different.”

“But that is football and we have to learn that in the Premier League, you cannot make too many mistakes or you will pay for that.”

“At the same time, the good thing is winning, you correct things, you can improve things and it will be easier for me to get the message over.”

Next up for Newcastle are Brighton & Hove Albion away next Sunday at the Amex Stadium in the 4:00 pm kickoff game.

We must win that game.

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26 comments so far

  • Ron Knee

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:13 PM

    Comment #1

    Soooo unlucky!

    0
  • Ron Knee

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #2

    Lacazette has been taking some tips from our Joselu!

    1
  • WLtoon

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #3

    Played well again yesterday, but Joselu is missing too many chances and its a worry. he has had lots of opportunities to add to his only goal netted so far. he is what he is, a bargain basement 4th or 5th choice signing costing peanuts. We should of been out of site before Stoke scored. I think we will be ok this season but it would be great if we could bring in a decent striker in Januaryto push us on to a higher position in the lge
    I see the southern bias towards Nufc continues even though we have deserved our consecutive wins. Even the Stoke fans claim that we only won bcos they were shite. A bit of a contradiction there i think..

    0
  • magspuggy

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:22 PM

    Comment #4

    No need to selfharm dr ed we are doing well atm and play like a team with the faith to make it continue. Hwtl.

    1
  • Shadow_Shearer

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:29 PM

    Comment #5

    WLtoon

    I would worry more about bringing in a number ten. Perez and diame is all we got

    0
  • WLtoon

    Sep 17, 2017 at 2:43 PM

    Comment #6

    SS
    I agree, Benitez seems to like Perez though. and we would be screwed if he got injured bcos Diame does,nt do enough. I wonder how Ritchie would fit in the the number 10 role.

    1
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:15 PM

    Comment #7

    Ha ha, Maybe I’m just slow or a bad judge of a footballer, but I’ve been impressed by Joselu and what he’s added to the team. His role is more than just scoring goals and to his credit he found himself in goal scoring positions on a number of occasions. But it seems he is useless and can’t score. This conclusion being drawn from one match!
    He was obviously desperate to score against his old club, and this may have contributed to snatching at shots/not being as relaxed and focused as normal. Let’s just hope he’s not getting dogs abuse on his twitter making him desperate to score in the next match.
    🙂
    All too often, pundits/commentators, who do influence our perception of a situatiuon, make a narrative which we support, and soon it becomes fact, regardless of the truth. An example would be, “geordie fans are deluded and expect their team to be winning the premier league every year”. We know this is not true, but it is an opinion held by much of the rest of the footballing nation.
    To this extent, if you believe that Joselu should have chipped the keeper on his second chance, because that is what the commentator said; please take a football in the garden and try to chip the ball when you are stretching for it with your toe. If in this case, his first touch had been better maybe he could have created a better scoring chance, but the ball came to him unexpectedly from a blocked clearance or something similar. When you are stretching/toe poking the ball, you have very little control over it’s direction, which is determined by the trajectory of the ‘poke’. If he could have poked the ball in the other corner, it would have been a goal, but I don’t think this was possible using the foot he chose to poke with.
    With his first attempt, he’s taken it on first time and missed the target. Maybe he could have taken the ball down and given himself an easier opprtunity if his touch had been good. But from what I’ve seen of him, he like to take on these volleys and half-volleys first time. If yesterdays had burst the back of the net, we’d be singing his praises and screaming “goal ot the month”. Small margins.
    His third was the easiest position to score and ironically, I was attempting to make this point on the blog, and missed it. So I didn’t see this until MOTD. So yes I would say a missed chance with that one.
    To recap: toe poke, not a chance; half-volley, half chance; close range blast, chance. With this point of view, we still have an great striker, who but for an excellent save by the Swansea keeper, would be a 2 in 3 striker; who has good positional awareness, holds the play up well and links the attacks, who gets in goal scoring positions regularly. But he did miss one good chance.

    15
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:17 PM

    Comment #8

    wow, that rant was longer than I thought. Thanks to anyone patient enough to read it.

    11
  • sing in the corner

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:22 PM

    Comment #9

    First venture onto the blog since lunchtime yesterday.
    Fantastic afternoon’s mix of entertainment and nerve shredding.
    Merino is one of those players who justifies admission prices. Silky skills in possession and a willing battler without the ball.
    So disappointed for Joselu.. Wants it badly, he contributed well but just one of those days in front of goal. The one at the very start of the 2nd half in front of the Gallowgate was the best one I think. Never mind, he’s gonna score goals and is still 1st choice on all round ability for me.

    5
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #10

    Wow, and Harry bought in 13 new players! That’s a lot of bungs. His dog must be flush.

    5
  • Ron Knee

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #11

    Chancel

    I agree. He should have probably put away the third chance.

    1
  • sing in the corner

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #12

    Hail Wor Ashley

    Several other posters who were there have already mentioned it, but please make sure you are in possession of the facts before you start saying the crowd are ‘pish again’ and not ‘pulling their weight’ etc. You often have a dig at the St James crowd, not sure why.
    The atmosphere was excellent, particularly in the period after they equalised actually, just when the players needed it.

    4
  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #13

    Singing
    this is what I wrote last night when I got in about Joselu and Merino

    If only Joselu could put the ball in the net he would be worth a fortune – has great movement control and vision also excellent in the air but but got to convert the chances he gets.

    Joselu 8 – would of been my star man if he had put his chances away lovely to watch him drifting along their back four good passer of the ball holds it up well good in the air only if only he could put his chances away.

    Thought Merino is getting better by the game could give Shelvey a lesson on how to drift into space to pick the ball up.

    3
  • SPRINGY

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #14

    Great performance yesterday from the lads… merino looking a class act although he was a little quieter yesterday he still grafted,and looked classy when on the ball,joselu had a mare when it came to luck in front of goal but he gets in to positions,gets involved and has good movement so maybe playing his old side got a hair up his arse and just wasn’t calm enough… we’ve played better since he came in side,not all down to him but goin forward we look a lot more creative and threatening,lascelles starting to look like the captain we’ve needed for a while…early days,so take the next game and continue on….well done all,supporters included.

    3
  • magspuggy

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #15

    Still 4th atm :-).
    Chancel i agree josulu is a good player mate and was guilty of trying to hard yesterday and struggled because of it. I honestly think when he gets the same sort of chances in games that dont have the added pressure he will score them nee bova. We look much better when he plays and dont have to have a jonjo ball over the top with gayle to run onto in order to score goals. He isnt the best in the leauge or the most expensive but he is a good player and i for one am glad he is wors 🙂

    4
  • sing in the corner

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:40 PM

    Comment #16

    Charlie
    I have to admit, when Atsu was bearing down on the keeper and went down I completely lost it. Think I nearly banged me heed on the roof and I’m in the lower tier! 🙂
    Couldn’t understand how that couldn’t be a pen. Apparently there is some touch on the ball, but this is a tackle from well behind Atsu, no chance there wasn’t contact from Stoke defenders from behind before the ball, which resulted in denying Atsu a strike on goaL. It’s got to be a pen!?

    3
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:48 PM

    Comment #17

    re the atmoshere, It is not possible to judge when hearing through the pitch microphones. The crowd noise only really comes across when the whole ground is giving it a ‘come on’ noise. St James park is also ma bit of a mishmash constuction, and not designed with accoustics in mind, like some of the purpose built complete stadia. Often on the streams I watch/listen to, the away fan’s singing is more prominent. That could be manipulation of the mics on sky’s part or just the way the sound from up in the gods is refected off the roof towards the pitch mics.
    I’ve read on here that in certain parts of the ground, the away fans are not heard, unless the opposition score and they can be heard over the quiet.
    I would love it if sky gave the no commentator option again, and had mics for the crowd, to portray the real atmosphere.

    2
  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Sep 17, 2017 at 3:48 PM

    Comment #18

    Sing
    from my seat in the Gollowgate I thought it was a stonewall pen.

    Did you see the stoke mix up in the 94th minute when Butland picked the ball up outside the box and then kick it upfield – Am I wrong but was the ball not in play and should of been a free-kick to us

    1
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:05 PM

    Comment #19

    Sing in the corner
    Wholeheartedly agree mate. Should be a penalty. The touch was so light as to be ineffective in stopping the chance, the tapping the legs together on the otherhand..This, in my view, is a brilliant discussion topic for the pundits, but no…the only penalty decision not deemed worthy of another look at. For me, if a player touches the ball first before fouling, and that touch is such that the ‘fouled’ player can no longer play a part in his teams attack, then no foul. If the player is stopped from continuing his role in the attack form the ‘foul’ then free kick or advantage.
    I think we all intuitively knew it was a penalty at the time, and were only talked out of it by slow mo replays and this ‘touch’, of which there was very little evidence in real time.

    0
  • sing in the corner

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:15 PM

    Comment #20

    Chancel
    I was stunned at the ‘highlights’ package MOTD put up of the toon game. Not even a mention of this incident in the analysis.
    We were one of the first games and could have been second priority match at least IMO. I suppose there was so much to choose from but howay..?

    1
  • sing in the corner

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #21

    Charlie @18
    Nah actually missed that one then mate, must’ve assumed it was a dead ball..
    But I was probably still busy having some kind of seizure at the time 🙂

    1
  • Tsunki

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:19 PM

    Comment #22

    It looks very much like our chances of getting some of these penalty decisions is going to continue in the same vein as recent seasons. We’ve had some abysmal officiating and any outsider would be forgiven for thinking there was something amiss with the officiating culture.

    1
  • hibbit

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:21 PM

    Comment #23

    Charlie
    i don’t think there were many in the ground that didn’t think it was pen,

    1
  • Chancel be a fine thing

    Sep 17, 2017 at 4:39 PM

    Comment #24

    sing in the corner
    And, correct me if I’m wrong, Perez had a goal disallowed for offside. This must have happened early in the 2nd half when I was typing my defence of Joselu piece on here. I’ve only read about it on the blog and have yet to see it. How can MOTD deem an offside goal not to be a highlight. Beggars belief.

    2
  • JohnJ

    Sep 17, 2017 at 5:37 PM

    Comment #25

    So Newcastle United are sitting in a very nice 4th position in The Premier League and good for them it looks very nice indeed and they deserve it. However a more important statistic from my point of view is that after a mere 5 games were are only 1 point off reaching 25% of the first target of 40 points in my mind – I feel confident that we will but I’m sure like most fans getting past that milestone is always a relief! Haway the Lads!

    The other factor is there seems to be a higher proportion of draws, or is it just me? That makes it better for us to win more games and maybe if we have to drop points lose one or two (not too many though!)

    0
  • welshgeordie9

    Sep 17, 2017 at 10:21 PM

    Comment #26

    Would help if it was legal and not from a back of a Lorry, get the real thing you tight gits.

    1

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