After watching the Newcastle manager on nufcTV do his press conference yesterday, you wouldn’t have thought the team had picked up only one point from the last six games and only one win (against Crystal Palace) in the previous 10 games.
Rafa was as upbeat as ever and talked about the team and the players and the fact that everybody in the squad is now physically fit.
Paul Dummett, however, is not available for the game today and he played yesterday for the U23 team for 60 minutes and said he felt fine after the game.
Paul is now ready to play for the first team when Rafa chooses him – maybe Wednesday night against Everton?
Rafa is also a savvy businessman, and he has said that in January Mike Ashley needs to protect his investment of £262M in Newcastle.
Rafa Benitez – cool and calm as always
That’s by investing in new players so we can keep in the Premier League this season.
If the team is low down in the Premier League or we get relegated the value of the club goes down.
That is simple business 101 – but we still don’t really know how much Ashley will invest in January.
This is what Rafa has said as reported in the Northern Echo today:
“At any football club in the world, the value depends on the first team. What you are doing on the pitch.”
“You can put everything around and that’s fine, but if you are in the Premier League and doing well it is easier.”
“If you are in the Premier League and things are not going well it is more difficult and if you are in the Championship it has less value.”
“That is so simple. For any club in the world, it depends on the performance of the first team.”
“And then you have to be sure that the first team is doing well.”
“It is very simple. You have to be sure that your team is strong enough to stay in the Premier League.”
“That has been my message from the beginning of the season. We have a very good group of players who are working very hard, but always you need players.”
“And you have to adjust things because normally you can see if something is wrong then it is now that you can fix things.”
“Hopefully we can do what we have to do and I will be positive after January.”
We even think the January transfer money was discussed during the one-on-one meeting between Amanda Staveley and Mike Ashley at the Paradise Indian restaurant in Hampstead on Wednesday night.
Maybe everybody was happy at the end of that meeting because some agreement on the transfer funds had been agreed – even if the club is not sold by the end of January.