It’s been a year of two halves for Newcastle – with the first half of the year being excellent when we won the Championship and promotion back to the Premier League.
And things looked really positive for the club as owner Mike Ashley told Rafa Benitez he could have every last penny the club had to spend on new players last summer.
But that promise was not kept by Ashley as he had selling the club on his mind, which in his eyes needed good financial records rather than good players.
And after not spending a penny last January Mike Ashley limited the spending in the summer.
So much so that we didn’t get many of our number one transfer targets and Rafa said he had to sign the players he could sign – rather than those he wanted to sign.
Rafa Benitez – we want to do well in the second half of the season
And so it has been in the second part of the year – after starting well with 14 points from our first 9 games, we are now in an awful slump of just 5 points from the last 12 games.
We are 5th bottom of the league and just one point above the relegation zone.
But Rafa has a positive message for Newcastle fans after he was asked if he thought the club have progressed over the last 12 months.
This is how he repsoned to that question, as reported in the Chronicle:
“Yeah I think it has.”
“We all know each other a lot better now.” “That’s people within the football club and my staff, and people in the city and the fans.”
“We all know much better now and every decision in the future has to be easier.” “With decisions you know that mistakes made will now be right decisions.”
“It has been a fantastic year with winning the Championship and getting back to the Premier League.”
“We are looking to finish in a better position, but it has been pretty positive.”
“Thinking about the future we want to do well in the second half of the season I think we have a great chance to remain in the Premier League.”
“Then we have to make sure in the future we build something stronger.” “We all know that our fans travel more miles than anyone.”
“But they were amazing last season in the Championship and again this year for some long trips in the Premier League.”
“I can hear and feel that the fans are behind the team at games.” “Against Manchester City when we were under pressure I could feel them behind us.”
“I understand that they want the team to play well offensively and score goals in every single game.” “But at the same time, they also know the reality.”
“And that is that we have to stay in the Premier League.” “The best way to help is to do what they have been doing and stay with the team.”
“I am really pleased with everything going on and hopefully with the fans behind us it can be a fantastic year.”
Rafa now needs to be backed by Mike Ashley in the January transfer window, so we have a decent chance of staying in the Premier League.
Right now, it’s looking just a little bit dodgy – but it’s nothing a couple of successive wins wouldn’t put right.
Howay The Lads!!