With the transfer window not going very well for him and after seeing the Newcastle side taken apart by SC Braga on Wednesday night in Portugal Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez was not a happy man after the game and vented some of his frustrations to the media.
Some were to do with the lack of money being invested in new players coming through the door.
But we also learned after the game that Newcastle are once again at odds with the players with their bonus plans for the coming season.
Last summer the captain Jamaal Lascelles stepped in and talked with Mike Ashley and got that settled.
Rafa Benitez with Jamaal Lascelles
That needs to be done again and quickly, so these are not long-lasting problems.
Apparently, that’s the reason the players refused to speak to the media after the Braga defeat – let’s sort this one out very quickly.
And things have to calm down at Newcastle with our season starting a week tomorrow at home to Tottenham; in the first eight games of the season we have to face five top six clubs – so it will not be an easy start by any means.
We face FC Augsburg tomorrow afternoon in our final pre-season friendly and Rafa is clear the team must improve.
This is what he has said as reported in the Northern Echo today:
“Yes, obviously we know it is important for us to improve, especially in front of your fans you want to do well on Saturday,.
“But the main thing is that we are doing a lot of things wrong, that is the reason why we lose these kind of games.”
“The Premier League is quite a bit stronger than friendlies and we have 10 days to improve everything.”
A win against Augsburg would help lift the mood of Newcastle fans – but a good display is basically what we want to see – with the crowd fully behind Rafa and the players – as usual.