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Rafa Positive, Upbeat About His New Newcastle Team – Everyone Is Happy

Rafa will continue to be asked about his contract situation at Newcastle and when he will be having talks on a possible extension.

It’s now March, and Rafa has just less than four months left on his current contract at Newcastle.

But he will not be drawn in press conferences and interviews on whether he will stay on Tyneside at the end of June.

It’s likely that will continue until we are safe in the league and maybe two or three wins will do that depending on how some of the lower placed teams perform in the next few games.

But Rafa seems determined to keep winning games until the end of the season – and he doesn’t want to lose four games in a row once we are safe in the league.

Rafa Benitez – we have to win games

That’s what happened last season when we lost four of the final five games once we had reached 41 points.

This is what Rafa has told the Chronicle today:

“I was talking with Lee Charnley. I think we have to concentrate on the games. Still, we have to win two or three games.”

“It’s not that we will talk when we reach that. It’s easy for me to say that in every press conference when you ask that. It is not ‘this is the mark, then we will start talking’.”

“It’s just that we have to do what we have to do now.”

“We have to win games. I know from experience, when you’re doing well, and people start talking too much, it’s when you make mistakes.”

“In this case it’s the same. We are doing well. We have to get these six or seven points that we need. It will be easier.”

“Even if you’re distracted, you will be safe. Now it’s a risk, but I understand you have to do it and fans will say ‘what is going on?’.”

“We have to stay calm and be sure the team will win a couple of games.”

“We need to keep going. Last year when we go to the 40-points mark, or whatever, we lost four games in a row.”

“Everything can change in a couple of weeks. This year, it seems, is similar (to last season), but still we have to get the points.”

“I was lucky enough in all my teams to have the fans, the majority of them, behind me.”

“You have cities where everybody lives and breathes football.”

“Naples was one of them. Liverpool is one of them, and this one. When everything is right, you can feel that.”

“That is much better, obviously. You can see the potential, because everybody is behind the team, you don’t have different ideas.”

“Everyone is happy, at least some days.”

Newcastle are now 6 points above 3rd bottom Cardiff, and that’s 7 points if you include goal difference with 10 games still to play.

10West Ham38-352
12Crystal Palace38-249

Rafa has again worked wonders with the players he has, and he now has two big future stars playing in his Newcastle side.

24-year-old £20M new boy Miguel Almiron and local lad Sean Longstaff and both lads look star players of the future.

That alone will help keep Rafa on Tyneside.

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Comments welcome.

70 comments so far

  • simon376

    Mar 2, 2019 at 9:38 AM

    Comment #1

    I’m sure the flyer thing I got says my next dd will be either 5th or 7th, can’t remember then revert back to 1st from next month

  • Lovem or Hatem

    Mar 2, 2019 at 9:51 AM

    Comment #2

    @ Lilongwe

    Thanks for the assessment of Samatta. I think it is going to be difficult to find a striker who could be back up for Rondon (if we do sign him)

  • Ron Knee

    Mar 2, 2019 at 9:53 AM

    Comment #3

    Shelvey has a reputation for being difficult, disruptive even, if things do not go his way but Benítez is at pains to emphasise he is proving highly professional during this spell on the sidelines.

    “No, he will not cause problems,” said Benítez. “Jonjo asked to play for the Under-23s and it’s very positive. He loves football and is keen to be there. If he’s fit, he can compete against anyone – he has no problem with that.” (Grauniad)

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Mar 2, 2019 at 9:59 AM

    Comment #4

    I hope we get Rondon, he’s done enough to earn the move if he wants it, and for us to pay the reported £16million for him. Even better if we can do an exchange including Gayle and/or potentially Murphy.

    I expect Leeds to come up, but as I said last night, I’d take Roofe if they don’t. 2 of Wolf, Roofe or Dolberg would give us strong competition and flexibility in our front 3. Terrier could be another, but I’ve not seen him play and only read reports and heard of our alleged interest in him.

    I reckon that’s going to be too rich for Ashley’s blood, but Rondon plus 2 is what I think we need to give depth and competition if we stick with the attacking trio.

  • martoon

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:02 AM

    Comment #5

    ‘re the DDs I’ve just had notification the first payment will be the 11th followed by 11 payments on the 1st. They’ve set up a new DD to cover this – I think it’s just an administrative thing?

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:06 AM

    Comment #6

    Spoilsport! That is all very straight forward. The blog loves a bit of speculation and a good conspiracy!

  • Toon Tang

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:17 AM

    Comment #7

    Yedlin isn’t a defender by any stretch of the imagination.

  • lochinvar

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:24 AM

    Comment #8

    Our season Ticket DD for next season starts March – 1st payment and all subsequent 11 payments are 15th of month.
    Same as last year for which DD payments ended last month.

    Payment dates are possibly as per your original nominated date of choice so you may be able to change that depending on your choice to fit your finances / wages etc. Check with them and instruct bank as you see fit eg 1st, 10th, 15th, 25th etc

    Just hope Ashley has now realised he has no more tricks up his sleeve for January transfer window shenanigans and false rumours of take overs. 11pm on the last day he nearly had 2 mores season tickets to sell but he didn’t get them. Just as well.

  • Sav

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:25 AM

    Comment #9

    Less than 4 months to Bexit…if Ashley allows this to happen he’s a fool. Honestly, I think he’s an eejit to have let it get to this point. Any other owner would have the golden handcuffs out and Rafa trussed-up like a turkey long before this. Some may not entirely like his style or his ‘don’t lose’ philosophy. but after all my years following Newcastle, I have had enough of the gallant losers, the entertainers, the mad geordies. A bit of win-at-all-costs and being hated and respected in equal measure will do me just fine. And Rafa carries himself and the club along with dignity and good sense, I can take some of that anarl.

  • lochinvar

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:26 AM

    Comment #10

    Martoon – check again or put your glasses on ? Think your dates might be the 11th (not the 1st ) every month ?


    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:31 AM

    Comment #11

    nothin to read into regarding DD, will be taken monday

  • Munster Mag

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:41 AM

    Comment #12

    Sav, very well put. I’m delighted we have a manager who is defensively smart and can allow us to get a platform in games. I’ve probably never put that on the blog the way I should have, but it’s great and as I have said before about rafa re the cancer patient at training and the disabled Christmas party attendance, he’s a hell of a nice man. No more mad geordie entertainers is fine by me. I keep mentioning the pace of Leicester on the break, that’s what I want too. Hard to break down, speedy and decisive on the break. Bit of snarl, nice.

  • Munster Mag

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:44 AM

    Comment #13

    So I presume longstaff won’t de developed as a holding midfielder, more of an all rounder, given his talent? As was saying before, it goes back to what John Giles was saying in the radio, the best midfielders can do both, and are not restricted to being a DM. They are comfortable on the ball and progressive in possession, but we’ll able to tackle aswell. Two of those might obviate the need for a DM although it goes against modern thinking.

  • martoon

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:45 AM

    Comment #14

    Lochinvar – rechecked definitely first payment 11th March followed by 11 on the 1st. Obviously different for different schemes I’m on the fixed 9 year not the original 10 year.

  • geordietom

    Mar 2, 2019 at 10:56 AM

    Comment #15

    i would like us to get 3 wins sooner rather than later put us on 40 points . keep going get more points on board . to get us even higher in the league… i know some people will say that is playing into Ashley’s hands . like he would say to Rafa LOOK i bought the player you were after for 20mill . and look where we are in the league . then Rafa could counter back to him . if you spent even more we would finish higher . maybe get into europe . just think playing in europe more advertising for your TAT shops ect ect . but we all know the fat one will move the goal posts…

  • TomaKaThor

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:02 AM

    Comment #16

    I could see us winning today, but also potentially getting easily beat…who knows, if we play like we did against them on the reverse, I think il just turn the match off

  • Bambams

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:07 AM

    Comment #17


    Morning fella

    I totally agree that Rafa should be able to go to Ash and just point to what Almiron brings to the team – for a measly £20 mill (compared to what other clubs have spent)
    Problem is mate, in my opinion all Ash wants is to finish above bottom 3 and to do it without spending a penny.

    We all know there is still a very good chance that this summer Ash gives the manager nothing, especially if we do finish around 10th.

    ‘Move the goal posts Ashley ‘ you are spot on mate

  • geordietom

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:10 AM

    Comment #18

    bambams …

    morning mate just thought i’d chuck that one in as we all know what he is like …

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #19

    I doubt you’ll find a single fan who doesn’t want 3 wins ASAP mate!!

  • ilovetoon8788

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:14 AM

    Comment #20

    Felipe Anderson is twice the player almiron is. He will rip us apart today.

    West ham 2 Newcastle 0

  • DubaiMicky

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #21

    Don’t feed the troll (ilovetoon8788)

  • Munster Mag

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #22

    Anderson has disappeared since he played us. I think he killed yedlin last time but cud be wrong

  • ilovetoon8788

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:31 AM

    Comment #23


    Its goijg to be very difficult today. We have not been impressive goijg forward even during our this good run.

    Carroll and Anderson is going to give lascelles and yedlin a difficult game. I say we will lose today.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:40 AM

    Comment #24

    Have you seriously got nothing better to do on match days, why don’t you try actually visiting that plastic stadium of yours for a change, you’s need all the support you can get.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Mar 2, 2019 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #25

    Somebody today pointed out that West Ham have beaten City and Arsenal at home, they’re obviously playing on the counter. They’ll be expected to come at us today in front of their fans and we’ll do them, 3-0, Almirin, Rondon and Schar, any guess which three toon players I have in my FF team today 😀

  • beermonkey

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:09 PM

    Comment #26


    schar longstaff almeron

  • lesh

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:09 PM

    Comment #27

    Rafa’s looking for a project at a club with ambition, strong support, history and a significant place in its local community. Step forward Leeds United as a possible contender for his signature this summer.

  • TomaKaThor

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:11 PM

    Comment #28

    We won’t go to Leeds lol

  • Bambams

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:12 PM

    Comment #29

    I often get fed up hearing pundits and commentators who keep saying ‘Its his (Ashley) money and it’s up to him what he spends’….

    It’s the ‘CLUBS MONEY’ that has been generated the same as the other 92 clubs, TV money, Merch, Advertising etc

    Why do they think we are any different, never hear them say this about any other owner

  • TomaKaThor

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:20 PM

    Comment #30

    Why does he even need so much money he could run the club and still be ridiculously well off, just letting us spend the money the club earns,but he needs every penny he can get for what exactly? He can afford his and every other fat mans diet for life with the money he has

  • Nostradamus the Geordie

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #31

    Bambams, if they say nice things about Mikey they get invited to the annual sea fishing trip in Florida.

  • ronaldo aarons

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:22 PM

    Comment #32

    And brand new Slazenger trainers.

  • lesh

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:25 PM

    Comment #33


    ‘Why do they think we are any different, never hear them say this about any other owner’

    As the frog would have it, that’s precisely why Ashley uses Bishop – to spread and perpetuate the myth. Issue and repeat a lie often enough and people believe it. The Ashley financing the club lie’s a bit like the £350m a week to the NHS lie that was peddled and bought in summer 2016 – people still repeat it as gospel.

  • ronaldo aarons

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:25 PM

    Comment #34

    Tough game today, pace they have is dangerous.

  • Dondatta13

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:31 PM

    Comment #35

    I fancy us to win today and a goal from the skipper from a corner or set piece.

  • Jail for Ashley

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:32 PM

    Comment #36

    No beer,
    Schar, Rondon and Almiron

  • beermonkey

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:34 PM

    Comment #37

    not a trick question then

  • Lilongwe Geordie

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:37 PM

    Comment #38

    Those are the three I suggested were the ones you should have put in last weekend! You’re welcome! 😉

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:46 PM

    Comment #39

    An annoying trait in some footballers is pointing. That is they point to imaginary others about imaginary situations.
    Ones who do this which I’ve noted are Ritchie, Lukaku and Sissoko.
    Really difficult to fathom out why they do it.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 2, 2019 at 12:46 PM

    Comment #40

    As much I like having two games to go to in a week – this next week’s break is appreciated.
    Ooh, missed chance by Lacazette!
    Strange lineup by Arsenal. Look happy with a point.
    For someone who professes to love the toon 8788, you sure mark us down for a hiding often enough.
    29 shots not impressive enough going forward then? Sheesh! You take some pleasing.
    Burnley were unbeaten in eight games before facing us, having drawn against Manure and beaten Spurs. We played them off the park.
    Arsenal score – so much for my draw!! 🙂


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