Benitez Explains Why He’s So Happy With The Team And His Players

Another upbeat Rafa Benitez today in his press conference and he refused to talk about the potential takeover.

But news today that Amanda Staveley and her coalition are in the process of doing due diligence on the club.

Rafa has said he is extremely pleased with the application of his players and the team.

And the fact they are performing well in training every day is the reason we are doing so well in our games and well positioned in the league table too.

But Rafa warns we still have to meet most of the top teams like the two Manchester clubs, Arsenal and Chelsea although we played very well against both Tottenham and Liverpool at home.

Rafa Benitez – Newcastle manager upbeat

Here’s some of what the manager said this afternoon:

“The team is doing well. I’m happy because everybody is doing what we’re expecting them to do, with ideas, with games plans.”

“Today we have had another good training session. That is why we’re in a good position in the Premier League table.”

“We started with an exercise on team spirit today. It was quite funny – the players enjoyed it.”

“We have had some games where maybe we deserved more. It could be even better, but we have to wait until January to see our potential.”

“We are learning to win even when we’re not playing well. We have to keep working harder.”

It would be interesting to know what the exercise on team spirit was.

Rafa’s right that we have had games where we deserved more, but on the other hand we were happy and a little lucky to get all 3 points last Saturday against Palace.

The ups and downs in the results and the luck we have in games tend to even itself out over a full season.

Another win on Monday night would be terrific.

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73 comments so far

  • Jib

    Oct 27, 2017 at 2:33 PM

    Comment #1

    The contact is a journo at the Independent
    labouring under the misapprehension that
    because my son is a Geordie he’d be
    interested in NUFC
    AS has made Ashley aware of her valuation this
    I don’t know if it now becomes a haggling match
    or what.

  • hibbit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 2:35 PM

    Comment #2

    bits and pieces coming in from all over the place now
    this sale is guaranteed to go through and its Ashley that’s doing the pushing
    he defiantly wants out whatever his reason

  • Mag52

    Oct 27, 2017 at 2:42 PM

    Comment #3


    …’whatever his reason’.
    Hopefully nothing to do with the Revenue and Customs people.

  • cyprus

    Oct 27, 2017 at 2:47 PM

    Comment #4

    If Gayle is fine he’ll probably start.

  • hibbit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 2:49 PM

    Comment #5

    not even sure Gayle will be on the bench never mind start

  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:22 PM

    Comment #6

    The tax case does worry me a lot the FA could make an example of us by relegating us or hitting us with a 15 or 20 point deduction and record fine !

    If say the tax man wants 100 million back who pays for this ? The club ? Or the individuals ?

    Someone mentioned a few threads ago would we be happy if the stadium rights changed or prices went up?

    Personally the problem for me when Ashley renamed the stadium you knew he wasn’t going to invest any extra money it was all a stunt for his company! Would be more than happy if it got us a player or 2 of quality every season !

    Prices may have to go up if we want to compete for players although I don’t think they need to go up dramatically as we will sell out every home and away allocation if we are challenging no problem

  • Mister Tuff

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:37 PM

    Comment #7

    LCBP – my take on the HMRC stuff – for what it is worth is that club individuals did not personally gain financially – but that any shenanigans – if it took place – was to keep the wage bill (tax) side of things down -penny pinching on behalf of Mr Tubbs.
    Players -different – as they apparently gained financially.

  • giimps

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #8

    I cant see the tax bill being too high for a club of this size, its only incoming players as those are the ones with image rights portions of their contracts, of the players mentioned none were on huge wages as no player is at Newcastle apart from maybe Ba and Marveaux , if the club is held partially accountable for the “image rights bonuses ” and are ordered to pay NI on these payments were looking at maybe 1-2 mil per player over their contract, if there are 10 players with dodgy agents its probably looking at 10-20 mil tops.
    Its only the tax and NI on these sums the tax man wants not the whole amount , i would imagine virtually every pro club in the world is using these methods for reducing tax liabilities, lets be honest here ,if the clubs are finding loopholes to reduce their liabilities and the tax man changes the law to close the loophole, then backdate the liability there is something wrong with the system that allows them to do this.
    The clubs had not broken any law at the time of operating these schemes, only when the tax man got wind of it and the law was changed did the liabilities become due……IMHO

  • cyprus

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:46 PM

    Comment #9

    Hope you’re right Hibbit. He hasn’t been at the races this year. And I’d like Mitrovic to get a five game proper run. To put doubts and speculation (he good – not good) to rest.

  • catchy in norway

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:48 PM

    Comment #10

    Just say the sold is sold, all done and dusted by 31Dec why is it so important that we have this magical figure of a 100million to spend, and what decent players would be available.
    is it not more important just to say funds will be available to strengthen the squad, so we don’t have our eyes ripped out .
    i don’t want a Rooney / Owen type of signing overpriced hasbeens looking for a payday.

  • giimps

    Oct 27, 2017 at 3:56 PM

    Comment #11

    Hibbit, this could be the day that the light at the end of the tunnel becomes bright enough to guide us to sanctuary.
    I just feel that a massive slug shaped weight is being slowly eased off my downtrodden battered love for the club ,Life as a Toon fan may just be about to ascend to heights only dreamed about since the 90s , im just pleased to be still a season ticket holder after a load of my mates refuse to set foot till the shadow has gone, even under Rafa there is still the undeniable threat of she slug and his decision making ruining what could be the meteoric rise we have been hoping for ,I really hope this is right and we as a club can be as one again, none of the stay aways, none of the animosity shown to the ones who go to the games ,everyone together, club, owner,manager and fans ……we can be united again ….The clues in the name Newcastle United….and we can be again

  • hibbit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 4:07 PM

    Comment #12

    i’m with you every step of the way

  • hibbit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 4:12 PM

    Comment #13

    if the buyers aren’t worried about the tax problem why should we be worried

  • giimps

    Oct 27, 2017 at 4:13 PM

    Comment #14

    I have a sneaky feeling were not the only ones , If indeed AS has made the club know her valuation i can see this being haggled to completion within weeks, The slug will probably want to keep his tat store advertising in the club for a few year to reduce the cost (unless the rumours of him selling his stake in SD are true) either way, this is the beginning….of what only time will tell, just to see the club having ambition beyond 17th in the prem will be progress.

  • ShirebrookToon

    Oct 27, 2017 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #15

    Things are beginning to pickup pace

  • lochinvar

    Oct 27, 2017 at 4:52 PM

    Comment #16

    Imagine there’s no ASHLEY
    It’s easy if you try
    No SPORTS DIRECT to own us
    Above us only SKY
    Imagine all the people
    Living for today… Aha-ah…

    Imagine there’s no MACKEMS
    It isn’t hard to do
    Nothing to take the piss from
    And no SMOGGIES too
    Imagine all the MAGPIES
    Living life in peace… You…

    You may say I’m a dreamer
    But I’m not the only one
    I hope someday AMANDA BUYS US
    And the TOON will be as one

    Imagine no SD BANNERS
    I wonder if you can
    No need for FANS PROTESTING
    Imagine all the GEORDIES

    You may say I’m a dreamer
    But I’m not the only one
    I hope someday AMANDA joins us
    And the TOON will live as one

  • Online Guy

    Oct 27, 2017 at 5:24 PM

    Comment #17


    Nice one , I was singing it as I read it. *****

  • Online Guy

    Oct 27, 2017 at 5:26 PM

    Comment #18

    She’s a blond lass she’s a bonny lass
    And she likes to cheer
    And th’ call her Mandy Staveley
    And ah wish she was hea…

  • martoon

    Oct 27, 2017 at 5:32 PM

    Comment #19

    If we are taken over and the new owners inject cash for transfers will we not be subject to FFP regulations? Although other clubs seem to get away with it we always seem to get picked on by the FA, FIFA etc!

  • giimps

    Oct 27, 2017 at 5:43 PM

    Comment #20

    Financial fair play is a joke, there are ways around this, one of the companies who are part of the consortium pays for the sponsorship of the goal nets for 100 mil a season or something, thats classed as generating your own income as per the rules the Mansours play by…..we will do the same until we can actually be a world footballing force…if that ever happens, but one of the reasons AS has identified Newcastle United as a club with potential is that she believes we are capable of doing a Man Citeh with regards to commercial enterprise, we own our own ground , one club city, history, massive fanbase (admittedly not to Manure or Liverfools size but potential for growth is massive ), she sees us as one of the last great clubs available….and were for sale

  • AncientC

    Oct 27, 2017 at 5:55 PM

    Comment #21

    I see Ben Arfa is being linked with Leicester. Puel seems to be the manager able to get the best out of him… it would be great for the PL to have Ben Arfa playing at his best. Leicester fans are in for a hell of a treat if that move materialises.

  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:21 PM

    Comment #22

    giimps @20

    We don’t own the ground – SJP’s sitting on land that’s owned by the Freemen of Newcastle and that land must be a prime site with no scope for development.

    However, if things pan out as they have with Citeh and the key players in the anticipated takeover very wealthy and wanting to contribute to the community, I can see some deal being struck where a new stadium and academy/ training centre/ sports complex or whatever are built within the City bounds leaving the SJP site being put to other use.

    Early days and we’re all dreaming of what may be but in the meantime, we’ll have to be as patient as a pregnant father – pacing the floor, smoking tabs and chewing finger nails until… The happy day comes and we can all thank Mr Ashley for doing us all a big big favour.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:22 PM

    Comment #23

    I didn’t even know he’d been installed as their manager, an article that says he’s keen on signing him as us as keeping tabs on him. Personally I think it’s a bad move but if Rafa fancied him, what a way to solve that No 10 problem:o

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:24 PM

    Comment #24

    The reason that City and Arsenal moved grounds is that theirs were dilapidated, ours is already one of the most iconic in Europe, we’re not going anywhere.

  • Novocastrian66

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:33 PM

    Comment #25

    All this takeover talk is getting me excited. I hope it comes off. The Sad lads down the road will be devastated. While they’re in the gutter we will be reaching for the stars.
    The rest of the Premier League will be worried because when we get going we will be like a runaway train.
    We are more than a city club. The club represents the region and the descendants of the area all over the world. It is unique in this country and I would go so far to say we are the closest thing to Barcelona FC in terms of what we represent, than any other club in the world.
    Our unique position attracts supporters from outside the region who want to be associated to a club who fans are genuine and loyal to our righteous cause.

  • AncientC

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:34 PM

    Comment #26

    Jail, If Puel can get HBA playing like he was at Nice, Leicester will have a bargain on their hands. I am assuming he wouldn’t cost much by way of a fee.

  • Online Guy

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:47 PM

    Comment #27


    Think your getting carried away a little there but I know what you mean ..I’m same , Dreaming. Good post.

  • giimps

    Oct 27, 2017 at 6:58 PM

    Comment #28

    Dreaming is good for the soul, especially when reality has sucked for a decade

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Oct 27, 2017 at 7:02 PM

    Comment #29

    Mahrez and Ben Arfa would be worth watching.

    The Qataris have flouted every rule going, from buying world cups, sponsoring fifa. And man city and psg have blatantly disregarded the rules every other team play by. If every other team is handicapped to only be allowed to spend what they generate, if one team just goes ahead and spends then they are giving themselves an unfair advantage. Might as well just decide that you are going to play 12 players instead of 11 and then get your cousins company to sponsor the FA a few million to shut them up. I don’t think the royal family understand the word fair or sport.

  • hibbit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 7:02 PM

    Comment #30

    it’s a might big IF !!!

  • lesh

    Oct 27, 2017 at 7:19 PM

    Comment #31

    Jail for Ashley@24

    You’re quite right about Highbury an Maine Road being dilapidated. They were in prime sites.

    Where their owners capitalised on new developments was down to and among other things, creating new stadiums, training facilities, jobs and a boost to the local economy by way of inward investment. Political and financial expediency it’s called.

  • Novocastrian66

    Oct 27, 2017 at 7:45 PM

    Comment #32

    Ancient; Divvent spoil my dream man. I feel like John Mills and his pals in Ice cold in Alice. The thing that kept them going through all their tribulations was the thought of an ice cold beer.
    They of course realised their dream. Ashley is my desert and the take over is my Carlsberg and I am, metaphorically, thirsty.

  • Novocastrian66

    Oct 27, 2017 at 7:46 PM

    Comment #33

    Sorry that should have been a reply to online guy. Oops.

  • Elmanio

    Oct 27, 2017 at 8:07 PM

    Comment #34

    Re Ashley’s reasons for selling

    He has always been ready to sell but has always been aware of the value of TV monies & their ever increasing value to the club

    If it is possible to search back through the blog archives you will see that I commented about this previously & explained he was in receipt of many offers over the years but non suited him @ the time

    He personally through Mash Holdings & it’s connection to Newcastle the club has made a substantial amount of money through his ownership time & now is as good a time as any to get out with a substantial profit on his spend

    He bought the club for a bet & he will have made in excess of £300 million personally by the time he’s done

    Property Devolopment is his new gamble & will take all his focus

  • Jib

    Oct 27, 2017 at 8:14 PM

    Comment #35



  • Black and white armpit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 8:24 PM

    Comment #36

    It still doesn’t ring true to me that all these foreign investors are clamouring for an ELP club atm due to the riches about to be bestowed in TV money yet a successful business man Is ready to walk away from that.?

    I appreciate he may need some quick cash for other investments however surely If these other opportunities are as lucrative as some suggest a man of his financial standing should have no problem borrowing finance to back them.

    Why sell the cash cow just before It really starts to mature?

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Oct 27, 2017 at 8:50 PM

    Comment #37

    Really impressed with the England U17 team.

    Brewster and Foden have been outstanding, LPool aren’t going to let Brewster leave them but I reckon a bid for Foden could be worth a try as he has a lot of players to get past to get into the Man City team.

  • Essex Geordie Bill

    Oct 27, 2017 at 8:53 PM

    Comment #38

    Lassoga is playing for Leeds tonight and looking a bit slow, I think there was a lot of interest by us for him over the last few transfer window.

    Little Vern playing tonight for them as well at LB.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Oct 27, 2017 at 9:01 PM

    Comment #39

    Black and white armpit,
    For whatever reason, and hopefully sparky55 has given us great insight to one reason, is that he needs a lot of dough to pump in to some land deal he’s got going on. Another reason, and this is just my opinion garnered from, and with others on the blog is that if he doesn’t sell now then we are fcuked. If he doesn’t sell and tries to hang about and await some possible riches then he has to back Rafa, so far he has shown no signs of doing so and never looks likely to given his past modus operandi. He knows now, if he tries to play Rafa for a fool he will leave. If he leaves he then has to go back to the type of people he has trusted in the past which he knows fine well hasn’t served him well. We are never more valuable as a club as we are now, if Rafa went and we went down, do you think Carlo Ancelloti or any other top manager would, firstly come here and secondly bond with the fans and create this buzz we have now which makes us so valuable?

  • Black and white armpit

    Oct 27, 2017 at 9:07 PM

    Comment #40

    Good reasoning Jail.
    I Just can’t trust the bastard given his history, how on earth that man has made billions (On wallpaper anyways) Is beyond me, bad decision after bad decision.
    Fingers crossed,


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