57-year-old Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez will try to get us a win at Crystal Palace today as we are now level on points with 3rd bottom club Stoke City after yesterday’s games.
The only thing keeping us out of the drop zone is our comparatively decent goal difference of -12, compared with other clubs in relegation trouble.
Three south coast clubs – Southampton, Brighton, and Bournemouth – all won yesterday and the first two now move above Newcastle in the league table.
Rafa Benitez – wants to manage for another 13 years
Bournemouth beat Stoke 2-1, and that follows their 3-0 win at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night, so they are quickly moving away from the relegation zone.
And now for some potential good news.
Rafa has said before that he sees himself managing for some years to come and he has told ESPN that he plans to manage into his 70s.
If he does that he’s got a lot of time to win more European trophies than the three he already has.
This is what he said to ESPN when asked if he would still be managing at 70:
“At the moment, I have to say yes, obviously, because I like the passion of football, I like my job.
“You have managers doing the job for years because of the energy that we have, the passion and the desire for winning that we have.”
“With the desire for winning I have, I cannot see a normal life for myself.”
“My wife and my daughters, but especially my wife, say, ‘Hello, haven’t you had enough, stay here.'”
“But at the same time, when you are at home and you are moving plates and glasses around the kitchen in 4-4-2, they say, ‘Go.'”
“The main thing is to have health. If you are healthy, you can continue and I am fine, touch wood. I’m fine. Normally I don’t drink and I don’t smoke, so that’s it, I’m fine.”
“Newcastle are in a learning process. People say, ‘You have to learn quicker’ — yes we have to learn quickly and we are improving, but the priority for any promoted team is to stay up.”
“Next year, you have more experience, more money and maybe you can pick better players up. If you want to compete against Premier League teams, you have to stay there.”
“The 52,000 (crowds), this city, everything we say about this club is massive, will have more effect because we will be established in the Premier League.”
When Rafa signed for Newcastle in March 2016, he had been at home for a few months after losing his job at Real Madrid.
His wife was delighted that he was back in football and that he would be a lot happier at Newcastle than at home all the time with not much to do.
Well apart from arranging the plates and glasses in a 4-4-2 formation – wonder if he tried 4-2-3-1?
Football is in Rafa’s blood – you cannot get away from that.
The dream is he could be managing Newcastle for the next 13 years, and that would make Newcastle into one of the top clubs in Europe, and we suppose it’s possible.
He seems to have found his next Liverpool, and it’s close enough to home in the Wirral.
Rafa seems to be energized by the passion and loyalty of the Newcastle fans – which matches his own enormous ambitions for the club.
It would be a dream come true if he signed a long-term contract this summer under new owners at Newcastle.
We need a win today – not a defeat or another draw.