Rafa Benitez and his squad will immediately travel to Murcia in south-west Spain after the game at Molineux on Monday night.
Hopefully, the mood of the players will be good becasue we will have won the game – which is possible with all our players fit again except Shelvey and Elliot.
Last season the squad went on the training camp to Murcia after we had beaten Southampton 3-0 at home on 10th March last year.
Rafa Benitez in Murcia, Spain last March
We had a 21-day gap, and the squad was in Spain, and then when they returned, we won our next three games against Huddersfield (1-0), Leicester (2-1) and Arsenal (2-1) before losing 1-0 at Everton.
This is what Rafa has said about the trip:
“We go for training – we did it last year.”
“We had double training sessions. What we wanted was good conditions, good weather, and everybody sticking together.”
“I think it’s an opportunity to get to know each other and fix the things that we need to fix in terms of tactics.”
“It was quite positive and hopefully it will be positive again.”
“Over there you have more time together. Maybe we will organize a dinner. We do normal things. It’s a change of environment.”
“We could go to Portugal or anywhere else if it’s the right place,” “We know this place, the pitch is good, the hotel is good.”
“Not too many distractions around, so we can focus on that. It’s what we’re looking for.”
“A lot of clubs maybe spend too much time in the sun, we spend time on the pitch.”
“The weather will be good, around 18 degrees, but that’s not the main thing.”
“We have the pitch we want, the conditions we’re looking for.”
“Everything’s in place. Maybe we go somewhere else and the hotel is better, but the main thing is the training pitch.”
“We came back from Spain and we won three games in a row.” “If we can do the same it will be quite good.”
Rafa is forever the man who is hard to impress and one reason for that is his standards are so very high.
And we love the man.
If we can win our next three games after the game at Molineux on Monday night, it would be excellent.
And there are no grumbles from our fans about the trip being anything other than difficult training sessions and bonding for the players including new arrivals Almiron and Barreca.
It’s what Rafa just loves to do – work with the players on the training field in sunny Spain.
Newcastle will play CSKA Moscow at the 3,500-capacity Pinatar Arena next Saturday.
That was where the game against Royal Antwerp was held last March, and it was a game lasting 135 minutes – three halves to allow every player a chance to play – it was a 1-1 draw.
They may do the same thing against CSKA Moscow and play three halves.