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Rafa’s Damning Message To Ashley – It Was The Idea To Win Trophies Here – I Am Not Happy To Survive

Rafa held a meeting with reporters after the game today when we lost 1-0 to Augsburg at home.

The boss was calm and collected and not as agitated as he was on Wednesday night after the team conceded four goals in the second half against Braga.

But Rafa also made a few pointed comments – aimed at Mike Ashley.

He says he came here for a project and doesn’t like just surviving every year – which seems to be what’s happening for next season.

A stern looking Rafa Benitez – in the dugout today

Do only enough in the transfer market, so we are a Premier League club next season – spend as little as possible – that could be the Ashley strategy in a nutshell.

That’s not for Rafa – he wants to achieve things at Newcastle – which is why he will likely call it a day – and leave next summer when his contract is up.

Here are some of the comments he has made as reported in the Chronicle:

“I think it was an entertaining game for the fans because both teams have chances. We improved from the other day because we had more control and played on the ball a bit better. Still we have to improve.”

“At the moment I can’t say a lot (about transfers). Maybe in a couple of days I can say more.”

“I was talking with Lee Charnley before the game and I’ll maybe see him after the game.”

I’m not saying we’re not working, but we had things lined up.”

“I am confident we can do it (new transfers).”   ” If you’re asking me if it’s ideal I would say no because the way I like to work is to do things early but if we can’t do that we have to work.”

“I hope we can do it.”

“Normally when we have had time and support, we deliver. So we have won trophies everywhere.”

“And it was the idea to do something similar here and I am not happy we have to just survive every year.”

“But at the moment we have to see if we can improve the squad.”

We don’t blame Rafa one little bit – but he has an owner in place who has no ambitions whatsoever for Newcastle.

The level of his ambition is to keep us a Premier League side and spend as little as possible to achieve that.

Comments welcome.

279 comments so far

  • DubaiMicky

    Aug 5, 2018 at 6:50 AM

    Comment #241

    I’ll translate


    Magpies in a coma: a lesson from the Premier League
    A Premier League club that relies on player sales? At Newcastle United, behind the scenes, “everything” is wrong – says coach Rafa Benitez a week before the start of the season. About a club that drives its fans crazy.

    In Newcastle, it’s as if the billion dollar TV contract of the Premier League never existed. The most expensive transfer of the club’s history is 13 years ago, the second-highest 22nd The players were called Michael Owen and Alan Shearer. And yet, Newcastle United wacker is in the richest league in the world.

    So far so it has come: A club is exemplary for years, the excesses of modern football, and the consequences sound really romantic.

    Newcastle United is a little bit like HSV: a long time ago champion and European Cup winner, until today an enormous, emotional fanbase, but for years only a ridiculed sleeping giant. Where the last no longer slept, but lay in a coma, as a fan of the “Magpies” recently expressed in the “Guardian”. Previously, he and all the others dreamed of the champions or at least the Europa League, today they only want to wake up one day and see their club in other hands, other than Mike Ashleys.

    Ashley, with his sporting goods trading company “Sports Direct” has become a billionaire, has been owned by United since June 2007, you could also say that he has since United in the shortage. But everything had started so well: The then 42-year-old met with fans in the pub, sat in the jersey in the stands and even drank there once with other “Magpies” a beer, which is prohibited in England. United claimed at the time that the drink, non-alcoholic, of course, had been handed to him. Many fans liked this West Midlands madman, somehow he was one of them, even if his account balance said otherwise. And did not he love the NUFC almost as much as she did?

    Eleven years later, and about a week before the start of the new Premier League season, coach Rafa Benitez announces things like “everything” is just going wrong off the field. He had “no idea” if he could still sign players. “The fans should be worried, I’m very worried.” Just had Newcastle, in the previous year as promoted tenth, lost a test match against Sporting Braga with 0: 4. No newcomer played with.

    In times when Huddersfield Town spends 20 million euros on Terence Kongolo, a center-back from Monaco, in which pure presence in the Premier League suffices to collect almost 150 million euros, like Newcastle 2017/18, Newcastle has one Transferplus of just under 20 million euros. To get Benitez Yoshinori Muto from Mainz , he first had to sell players; the others of the few new ones like the ex-Hoffenheim Fabian Schär cost almost or nothing at all. How can that be with an English first division club, one of the top-selling clubs in the world?

    Back in 2008, when Ashley drank beer in public. Because beloved coach Kevin Keegan had to learn one day after the end of the summer transfer window that his superiors had secretly offered to sell some of his players with Ashley at the top, he resigned angrily. The fans protested, demanding Ashleys Aus for the first time. And he tried for the first time to sell the club, a good year after the acquisition in which he had allegedly only realized that Newcastle was in debt. Officially, he regretted his entry, described it as a “disaster for all”, his money was lost. But just like in 2009 and 2017, there was no prospect who wanted to meet his demands, now at least 450 million euros.

    Ashley has taken what they love, and the rules have no objection

    And as long as that’s the case, he stays flat. To save his millions halfway, he has been investing for years only as much as is needed to keep Newcastle in the lucrative Premier League. Place 6 or 16 – he does not care. Newcastle dropped in 2016 after a chaotic season, mainly because Ashley had agreed reinforcements only when it was already too late. The funds would have been available as with every member of this league.

    And so it happens that a single man, a club that even played in the second division in the year in front of more than 50,000 spectators, paralyzed for a decade, the giant did not wake, but knocked out and drives the fans into madness. You see, what would be possible with this club, with this coach, but the only one who could put their visions into action, waves away. He has taken from them what they love, and the rules of the game in England have no objections. What if an investor forgets their own interests while hunting for their own interests, even consciously neglecting them? Newcastle fans know it now.

    Benitez could go anytime, many fans would join in the meantime

    “People need to understand that we’re not going to get the player who tops our wishlist, not even second or third,” Benitez Ashley’s policy is now openly critical of. He can afford it: he has led Newcastle back to the Premier League, where he has impressively kept his sovereignty against all adversities; he could easily resign at any time and would probably have a new job within days, his working paper ends in 2019. He wants to sign the new five-year contract that Ashley has offered him only if this investment in the offspring and the training ground suits, and he knows all Fans on his side.

    It looks like Newcastle is heading for the biggest test of the Ashley era. On the lawn at the beginning of the season threatens adversity (the dress rehearsal: a 0: 1 against Augsburg) , but besides all the more – a current premium dispute fits the comatose state.

    “If Benitez leaves,” say many followers in despair, “let’s go!” You will know for yourself after more than ten years: Ashley could live with it.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Aug 5, 2018 at 6:58 AM

    Comment #242

    Danny Ings £20M?

    …in what economy is Danny “always injured” Ings a £20M player…surely you don’t buy these news?

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:07 AM

    Comment #243

    I only buy it as much as I buy other rumours..
    I wouldn’t want to pay that, but I feel if he stays in England that’s what he will cost, or thereabouts. My point was really that now we have Rondon, we don’t need another in the same mould.

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:11 AM

    Comment #244

    Sing…desperation will do a lot of things, but surely no one’s that desperate!

    If Rondon comes here I cannot see us signing another forward!

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:12 AM

    Comment #245

    If Muto can play no 10 effectively we may have a reasonable combination. Ifs…
    Let’s face it, Ashley was never gonna sanction big bucks on a proven prolific striker I the real world. We’d only be able to loan one who was failing to score regularly enough at his parent clubs so was being farmed out.
    Not happy about it at all, but realism has to be factored in now that we are counting down the final hours of the window..

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:16 AM

    Comment #246

    We still have some serious issues in the #10 spot should Perez get injured. The same goes for Shelvey and Lascelles…

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:18 AM

    Comment #247

    Sing…Muto is not a #10 player in terms of how we play!

    Can he play there? Maybe! Is he effective? That’s really the question.

    Personally I think we should stop buying players and show horn them into a position they don’t normally play…

    If we need an ACM then buy an ACM!

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:19 AM

    Comment #248

    *shoe horn

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:22 AM

    Comment #249

    Agreed there. It was nothing short of amazing how we kept our first team players fit for so much of the season. Luck and some good work by the training methods, and the fitness / conditioning team?
    What the hell is going on with our academy / youth system? No wonder Rafa wants heavy investment there too.
    We have produced precious little over the last decade, surely we can bring something through at some point? The Beardsley saga still grinding on and on?
    Revamp please…

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:36 AM

    Comment #250

    jesperfuglsang – capt’n awesome of the lemon crew

    “Remember we also watch the games…”

    Unless of course we’re not playing in the Championship or at four o clock on Sundays and half five Saturdays.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:39 AM

    Comment #251

    “It Was The Idea To Win Trophies Here – I Am Not Happy To Survive”

    People wonder why Alan Pardew got so much grief, maybe if he’d said that instead of signing an eight year deal.

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:41 AM

    Comment #252

    (Agreed with @245 that was..)

  • hibbit

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:44 AM

    Comment #253

    has there ever been a more important week in the history of newcastle united than this one ???

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:45 AM

    Comment #254

    It’s almost sadistic what he’s doing, he’s providing a team that will just about survive with seemingly not a care if we do go down. Peesonally I think its going to take going down and stsying down before he sells up.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:46 AM

    Comment #255

    I take it my predictive text has switched it’s self off 😮

  • Optimistic Panda

    Aug 5, 2018 at 7:58 AM

    Comment #256


    Is he?

    What I mean is, will they survive, is he bothered if they do?

    I’ve thought more than once he’s keeping the tv money to pay for the next inevitable relegation.

    Rafa may provide another miracle but after this season I think he’ll leave, I can’t think of anyone who’ll get the same out of the players and who’d work for Ashley.

    Ashley probably thinks the media attention from a relegation and promotion will provide more than enough headlines and attention from the media for SD, also it’s a ideal excuse as to why there’s never any money and why Nufc can’t compete

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:00 AM

    Comment #257

    Endgame approaches..
    I suppose it’s always been on the cards, the fans have just put up with it and been prepared to wait and see..wait and see.
    People have already mentioned it’s possible he will just prepare to asset strip.. Who knows, maybe that’s his plan.
    My stance is if that’s the case then we might as well oppose it and cause what embarrassment to him we can to him along with his dreadful companies. He’s had over a decade to change his tack, and he hasn’t really budged.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:04 AM

    Comment #258

    It’s time to stand up and be counted. Unfortunately I’m away again on Tuesday so will likely miss the fans meeting.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:12 AM

    Comment #259

    You think he’ll leave? It’s nailed on.

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:18 AM

    Comment #260

    JFA @ 257
    I can’t see any fan meeting arranged yet..is there one?

  • jazzyp

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:19 AM

    Comment #261

    Lads lads lads what’s with all the negativity and the same old rhetoric lol. Don’t you know that you will be slammed for writing the same old crap on here by some on here.
    Please behave ya selfs and revel in the fact you have an ST

  • DubaiMicky

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:19 AM

    Comment #262

    OP, I think he’s trousering the TV money to pay off his “debt” – not that I believe any debt exists after all the advertising but hey ho.

    If we go down and he’s already paid off his “debt” to himself (which is better to have cos of the overall tax liabilities for MASH), then he can sell for £250m and still make over £150m profit.

  • hibbit

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:21 AM

    Comment #263

    the question is not will he leave its when ??

  • lesh

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:22 AM

    Comment #264

    Ashley are

    If Rafa walks before the end of the season, Ashley will have won – an immoral victory!

    If Rafa can stick it out despite the pressure on him, he’ll have made a big point – that Ashley’s bullying doesn’t always win. Likewise, if Ashley sacks him, Rafa’ll have won a moral victory and Ashley’ll be slaughtered by the media.

    Rafa, be strong, try to stick it out – you’re a bigger man than Ashley’ll ever be.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:25 AM

    Comment #265

    There’s one being planned I believe. I haven’t got a clue how to use Twitter though.

  • lesh

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:26 AM

    Comment #266


    It’s scandalous that the club’s plight is hitting the European media – it’ll be world news soon. Ashley’s succeeded in dragging the good name and status through the gutters.

    Come on Amanda or some well-intentioned, save our club from one of the nastiest, greedy creatures on earth – please.

  • lesh

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:28 AM

    Comment #267

    * Come on Amanda or some well-intentioned person or persons, save our club

  • hibbit

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:32 AM

    Comment #268

    just my thought on yesterday’s game, would a fit danny ings have made a difference, we played some decent football at times and had long spell were a goal would have swamped them , if we could have just taken the chances we made and we did make them, this morning football wise would be a far bright place

  • Jib

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:35 AM

    Comment #269

    I was going to paste Rafa’s comments shuffled
    around to show that they are answers to specific
    loaded questions and the Chron (depending on
    the word order) could make them say anything.
    Then I thought those that have the wit can do it
    for themselves , and the rest are so blinkered and
    entrenched in their views I’d be wasting my time.

    Suffice to say if the Chron keep twisting Rafa’s words
    he’s going to go all monosyllabic on their asses

    (I really will have to stop reading Tarantino scripts)

  • sing in the corner

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:36 AM

    Comment #270

    I’ve scanned twitter, no date yet for a ‘fan meeting’
    The problem is organisation. IMO there’s no point giving it the ‘you fat cockney ******* …’ song any more. It’s bad PR. We need to get the non football fans to notice and have some affinity for it. There’s a huge cross section of people in a crowd, the bigger it is the harder to harness.
    Unfortunately you will also get a section of aled up prats ready to cause bother and knock a horse about etc. People love to see a story about hooligans getting a kicking by the cops and getting locked up. It mustn’t decend into that.
    If there are chants, what’s wrong with (3 beats) Ashley Out!! Or if you want a tune… ‘Where’s the money gone? Where’s the money gone??’

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:38 AM

    Comment #271

    I agree, fat cockney isn’t winning hearts and minds

  • jazzyp

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:40 AM

    Comment #272


    That stands for much of last season mate where we had chance after chance but failed miserably with that killer blow.All pre season has been pretty much the same hence us only having Josepoo as an option,And he ain’t gonna keep us in the Pl.
    My worry is now our options are Muto who hasn’t even played for us yet and maybe Rondon..Big questions will come from these front 2

  • Jail for Ashley

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:43 AM

    Comment #273

    Do you think that the manager will stay after his contract is up and that Arsene Wenger will replace him if he doesn’t?

  • Mister Tuff

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:43 AM

    Comment #274


    Jib – the only “script” you’ve read is from your doctor for prozac and female hormone treatment to make your titties bigger.

  • martoon

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:44 AM

    Comment #275

    Hibbitt @268 – I agree I thought we played quite well it was the normal problems of not taking our chances – not sure how much Rondon will help with this?

  • dig-n-dig22

    Aug 5, 2018 at 8:51 AM

    Comment #276

    Jail 250

    “It was the idea to win trophies here- I am not happy to survive”.
    Jail, that statement should have been said 4 windows ago in the Championship when we did zilch in the winter window, “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me 4 times????”, It’s clear who has the final say on transfers, It’s not Rafa. This has to be the most embarrassing window Rafa has experienced under Ashley, it’s even rumoured that Ashley offered Gayle as a sweetener to secure the Rondon deal behind Rafa’s back. Rafa should have had the balls to demand £40Mill + player sales for a warchest to launch an assault on a top six position instead of accepting the dregs served up to him by Ashley. We need 4 or 5 quality signings not 9 or 10 Joselu’s, anyone who thinks the more the merrier for our survival in the Prem is deluded!

  • Ron Knee

    Aug 5, 2018 at 9:04 AM

    Comment #277

    Considering we haven’t managed to score in the last three friendlies, would Muto and Rondon (?) be any worse?

  • geordieboy83

    Aug 5, 2018 at 9:04 AM

    Comment #278

    Morning all, as I posted about a week ago I’m relatively happy with the signings made so far, would’ve loved more but can still see one or 2 more coming in after Rondon.

    Morning jazzy I believe it was yourself I was waxing lyrical to about schar, I’ll help lad me hands up he ain’t looked the best so far like, but trust me he will be a very good player for us.

    On Rondon, I’m sure towards the end of the season and at the beginning of last season we were linked with Rondon, and the majority of the blog ridiculed it, saying tha would show ambition, and we couldn’t compete with the names linked with him I.e Chelsea, inter Milan to name a couple. So I’m curious what has changed in people’s mindsets, from him being unrealistic, to now not being good enough? I think he’s a good player and Rafa has wanted him for a long time.
    (Disclaimer: No Rafa did not tell me personally he wanted ed him for a long time:)

  • Moonraker15

    Aug 5, 2018 at 9:31 AM

    Comment #279

    So Rafa’s comments were taken out of context we’re they? Would you kindly enlighten us poor mortals to what his feelings are? Maybe he’s really happy the way the team strengthening is going! Maybe we’ve totally misjudged him and we are going for top six and a cup win this season!
    You are the ultimate wum !

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