Jonjo Shelvey did not make a good start to the season, and his lack of control on the field cost us points against Tottenham in our very first game.
But we know that Jonjo is trying his best not to be provoked by other players and to reign in his lack of discipline at times – which gets him into trouble.
Jonjo explained on Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday how Rafa works with his players and said that if they don’t listen to Rafa, they don’t play for Rafa.
The manager demands 100% in training and on the field and as we’ve said before that’s one good reason why any acquisition of Ben Arfa for the second time at Newcastle seems remote at best.
Rafa Benitez – in training
This is some of what Jonjo said on Sky Sports’ Soccer Saturday:
“The manager is very detailed in the way he works and if something is not right, then you will be made to do it again and do it again.”
“That is beneficial for us because you are constantly learning.”
“And if you do not listen, then you are not going to play with Rafa.”
“You have to take it on board and learn very quickly. You can tell that in the way we have set up this year and how well-drilled and organized we are.”
“And this is a credit to Rafa and his coaching staff.”
“First and foremost he works on the work-rate side of the game – obviously to play in that way, you need to be able to work as hard as possible.”
“And I have done this over the past season and a bit.”
“Tactically, he has got me a lot better than what I used to be, but there is obviously still a lot of room for improvement.”
“It is just about taking in everything he says and learning off one of the greatest managers of this current era.”
“He just gives an aura when he comes into the room, everyone shuts up and listens to him. A manager needs that and he has that in abundance.”
Jonjo must control himself on the field this season because any more indiscretions and we think Rafa may lose confidence in the player and could even sell him in the summer.
Jonjo seems to understand how important it is for him to control his demons this term and is doing his very best for Newcastle.
He’s expected to start tonight at Burnley where hopefully we can get our second win in a row.