Rafa has talked about the difference with his squad today as compared to that which he inherited just over two years ago.
Fans have seen a vast difference in the attitude of our players since Rafa has arrived.
They want to be at Newcastle, and they know all about the history of Newcastle United – a great club.
And you don’t get into any side managed by Mr. Benitez if you haven’t worked your tail off in training the previous week and you have to do the same thing in every game.
Rafa talked a lot yesterday during his press conference about how thinks have changed since we last played at the King Power Stadium two years ago – that was Rafa’s first game in charge, and we lost 1-0.
Rafa Benitez – world-class manager of Newcastle United
Rafa says there’s been a lot of change regarding the quality, names, and experience of the squad.
And he thinks the main difference is in the character and mentality of his current group of players.
Here’s some of what Rafa said in his press conference:
“There will be a lot of people asking about my future, but it’s just about getting to 40 points.”
“We don’t need to talk about anything else.” “Can we get three points against Leicester and get to 38?”
“If not we have to carry on and try to get three points against Arsenal.”
“I told Lee Charnley that we have to keep working but to continue working doesn’t mean we lose focus on getting points in every game.”
“We had to change a lot of things two years ago.”
“Relegation brought big change, moving players around for the Championship and after that, the Premier League is another challenge.
“We did well in the end and we’re pleased with that.
“You can see now a big difference between the team I had at the beginning and the one we have now.
“In terms of quality, names and experience there’s a lot of change.
“The main thing is the character and mentality of this group of players.”
“Maybe Claude Puel thinks we’re fine but I have said before we’re not safe and we have to keep going.”
“We need points from everywhere and if we can start doing that at Leicester then I’ll be really happy.”
“We have to go one game at a time, the first thing is Leicester, then it’s getting to 40 points.”
“If we reach the 40 point level we will see what it means.”
“It will be massive for me, the staff, the city, and the club.”
“It’s our first year in the Premier League and it’s always really difficult but still we have to do it.”
Rafa’s temperament of never over-reacting to anything, allied with his cool confident and even casual demeanor is just perfect for a manager of Newcastle United.
He was born to manage a club like Newcastle United – especially in the downtrodden state we were in when he arrived.
But since then Rafa has put smiles on a lot of our faces.
Even after we were relegated two years ago and Rafa agreed to stay – fans were so upbeat.
Such is the immense impact Rafa Benitez has had at Newcastle.