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Rafa Starts Push To Finish Season In Style – Asks Fans To Have Belief

At this time last season Newcastle were on their second successive home win against Huddersfield (1-0) after previously beating Southampton 3-0.

Newcastle then beat Leicester away 2-1 and Arsenal at home 2-1 to get to 41 points and safety.

But then we went into a nosedive and lost four games in succession against Everton (1-0), West Brom, (1-0) Watford (2-1) and Tottenham (1-0).

We finally finished the season off well with an excellent 3-0 home win against Chelsea who were in the FA Cup final the week after the last games in the Premier League.

And rather curiously Newcastle have the identical record this season as last season after 31 games.

Premier League SeasonPlayedWonDrawnLostGFGAGDPointsPosition

So we have a good chance to beat last season’s total of 44 points although it could be challenging to reach 10th place in the league.

Rafa Benitez – wants to finish higher than last season

This is what Rafa has said about the last 7 games as reported in the Chronicle:

“Every year, we have generally followed a similar pattern,”

“I would not always say ‘good results’, because last year we lost four at the end, but we were already safe.”

We have normally had good performances from the team and, physically, the team is OK.”

“The players enjoy it a little bit more at this point in the season because they can try things and they do well.”

“We have to ensure we are solid, where we keep focus and we have balance.”

“If we keep doing that, then we will have a chance. The fans have to believe that the players can do it and finish higher than last season.”

“I think we are in a good moment now in terms of togetherness – the players, also in terms of the team’s relationship with fans, and the mood around the city.”

You have to keep winning to keep that because, in football, everything can change in one week.”

“You win and you’re the best manager in the world, the next week you make two mistakes and everyone’s criticizing you

“We need to be consistent – by creating chances and scoring goals.”

Here are the final seven games and we need 10 points to beat the 44 points of last season.

Mon 01 Apr   Arsenal vs Newcastle           8:00pm
Sat 06 Apr   Newcastle vs Crystal Palace    3:00pm
Fri 12 Apr   Leicester vs Newcastle         8:00pm 
Sat 20 Apr   Newcastle vs Southampton       5:30pm
Sat 27 Apr   Brighton vs Newcastle          5:30pm
Sat 04 May   Newcastle vs Liverpool         3:00pm
Sun 12 May   Fulham vs Newcastle            3:00pm

Four wins in those last seven games – against Crystal Palace, Southampton, Brighton, and Fulham would get the job done.

Comments welcome.

51 comments so far

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:30 PM

    Comment #1

    I believe

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:33 PM

    Comment #2

    I was working in Sheffield in dogs and the match was on the telly, none of that sky rubbish proper telly.

    The commentator said in the build up “Newcastle like to attack, theres no way they can play their way and not get beaten badly by quality opposition in Europe”

    I think we won 10-2 on aggregate lol.

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:34 PM

    Comment #3


  • Jib

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:39 PM

    Comment #4

    I thought you meant in Owlerton

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:48 PM

    Comment #5

    Panda, Peter Beardsley will always be my favourite player, purely because he was my first NUFC hero, but Rob Lee is a very close second. Shearer came to the entertainers late and while he was awesome, he was the polish on what was already a very good team.

    Those that formed the foundations of the squad – Cole, Pav, Albert, Sellars, Clark, Bez and others – will always mean a little bit more to me. Rob Lee is foremost among them.

    I’m still upset David Kelly never got a chance in the Premier League.

  • Jib

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:51 PM

    Comment #6

    Simon’s relative Gavin Peacock was always a fave of mine
    a real 100 percenter

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 19, 2019 at 9:59 PM

    Comment #7


    You remind me of a old friend, he loved all those.

    Sellers was a old fave, no one worked harder than David Kelly, Rafa would love him!

    Clark was the year above me at school, Benfield.

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:01 PM

    Comment #8

    Merendina for me, he was kack but I liked the chant

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:32 PM

    Comment #9

    I see Everton have been asked for comment by the FA on allegations of their fans chucking an object at Ross Barkley, one of their own apparently.

    Classy fans and a classy club….

  • Oldgit1

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:43 PM

    Comment #10

    @ Optimistic Panda, I’m sure I heard or read something that said Hall wanted rid of Kelly, he showed no respect to him. He instructed Kevin Keegan to get rid.

  • Oldgit1

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:44 PM

    Comment #11

    Sorry my post was meant for RobLeenio.

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:47 PM

    Comment #12

    “You win and you’re the best manager in the world, the next week you make two mistakes and everyone’s criticizing you”

    Nah, just catchy, everyone else loves you Rafa.

    It is funny how the team’s glorious inconsistency follows such a consistent pattern over the course of a season. Even Rafa recognises it, so it must be true. This must be something he thinks he could work on, making the team more competitive throughout the season, not just at the end.

    I’d love a flying start to a season at some point. There’s something glorious about an early season charge up the table with the attendant dreams of Europe and Cup glory, even if you do know in the rational part of your brain that it can’t be sustained.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:49 PM

    Comment #13

    As football fans I just know you’ll love this heartwarming story and should make the effort to download and watch.
    It’s called Brothers In Football and details first the history of the Corinthians Casuals FC, a club that has always been strictly amateur and how they influenced the forming of the famous Brazilian side Corinthians.
    The club is in danger of going out of existence…
    I won’t spoil it for anybody because its such a great story that deserves to be enjoyed fully.
    It was on BT Sports and available on download if you missed it. If this doesn’t bring a massive smile to your face, you’re following the wrong sport!!! 🙂

  • Charlie in the Gallowgate

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:51 PM

    Comment #14

    See Bolton Wanderers could be put in administration or wound-up tomorrow

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:52 PM

    Comment #15

    Oldgit1, that’s interesting. I’m not sure I really believe it as John Hall always seemed to leave Keegan in charge of the team, but it could be true.

    If it is true, Christ knows what Hall thought of Brian Kilcline….

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Mar 19, 2019 at 10:56 PM

    Comment #16

    “Killer Kilcline” is something of a bohemian I believe. A bit of a hippy and a lover of art and music. Quite hard to believe for those of us who remember him as a player, but apparently so, even back then.

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 11:05 PM

    Comment #17

    Nicky, every day’s a schoolday matey

    Is Jib Brian Kilcline?


  • Bobbybee

    Mar 19, 2019 at 11:10 PM

    Comment #18

    No, I’m Killer Kilcline and so’s my wife’! 🙂

  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 11:17 PM

    Comment #19

    Lol Bobby, I know you’re not.

    Killer used to break other peoples’ backs, not his own….


  • RobLeenio

    Mar 19, 2019 at 11:18 PM

    Comment #20



  • Bobbybee

    Mar 19, 2019 at 11:41 PM

    Comment #21

    Ha ha, absolutely no offence taken mate. 🙂 Actually, our lass has always been in the bed when I’ve woken with a fracture. You don’t think….?

  • Munster Mag

    Mar 20, 2019 at 12:10 AM

    Comment #22

    Panda, it’s Mirandinha -try a bit harder. And stop stereotyping the Irish. Makes you look stupid. Oh wait… Lmao.

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 20, 2019 at 12:36 AM

    Comment #23

    moanster – did you say the other day you were coming over to Gods country.
    Any chance of a quote for a bit of tarmacing and fixing some roof tiles.

  • Bobbybee

    Mar 20, 2019 at 12:36 AM

    Comment #24

    We’ve got Mirandhina
    He’s not from Argentina.
    He’s from Brazil
    He’s ever such a good footballer – or words to that effect! 🙂

  • NY Mag

    Mar 20, 2019 at 12:45 AM

    Comment #25

    Nice one Bobby – I haven’t heard that for a long,long time 🙂

  • lesh

    Mar 20, 2019 at 1:50 AM

    Comment #26


    ‘It is funny how the team’s glorious inconsistency follows such a consistent pattern over the course of a season’o

    Here’s your homework to be handed in by close of play this Friday.

    Can inconsistency be consistent? Discuss.


    Nicky, here’s yours:

    Rasputin had long hair, did that make him a hippy?



    Here’s yours

    If your lass is in bed when you’ve woken up with a fracture, there must be something in this trancendental naughties malarkey?

    By close on Friday.

    That should keep you all out of mischief.

    Online Guy

    Got the Vishna Bunyan CD and she’d have fitted in nicely with the Incredible String Band. Sitting on her bean bag, gazing at the chees plant while chanting ‘Ommmmmmmm’ In saying that, she must’ve had something for Swarbs to be sitting in on the album.

    G’night all.

  • lesh

    Mar 20, 2019 at 1:52 AM

    Comment #27

    NY Guy

    How very remiss of me…. Hi and ‘bye.

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 20, 2019 at 1:57 AM

    Comment #28

    Nine days to Freedom. Hurrah.

  • lesh

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:04 AM

    Comment #29


    Freedom from what? Sanity?

  • lesh

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:07 AM

    Comment #30


    If you’re still in the UK, the Lords of Fate have been with you. Stay lucky.

  • NY Mag

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:07 AM

    Comment #31


    No homework for me?

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:21 AM

    Comment #32

    lesh – find a quiet room where you will not be disturbed. Recount in your mind Henrys’ speech at Harfleur.
    Sing in your mind Rule Britania.

    Repeat again and you will have returned to a true stout hearted Englishman.

  • NY Mag

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:38 AM

    Comment #33

    Mr T,

    You made me laugh once again…..but, I really don’t want to get into the middle of a political debate….
    BTW, I always preferred pomp and circumstance march no. 1

  • Mister Tuff

    Mar 20, 2019 at 2:47 AM

    Comment #34

    NY – yes that is a good song.
    Unfortunately politics/Brexit will appear on here in the coming days.
    Lesh won’t be able to help himself.

  • The next Mike Williamson

    Mar 20, 2019 at 5:08 AM

    Comment #35

    And there’s me thinking all Brexiteers or BeLeavers were all a bunch of slogan chanting, chest beating, overly patriotic, tabloid reading imbeciles from a bygone age that think Britannia still rules the waves and is still at war with Germany. But how wrong I was. Mr Tuff the great intellect who specialises in the subject of failed one-upmanship on Jib has proven me wrong. A man, lest we not forgot, so cultured he knows more than Jib about Picasso and once even looked at some of his work. Who’d have guessed Professor Tuff would be amongst those who think it’s a good idea to sink our country (or take back our Freedom from the Germans depending on your level of intelligence). Thanks for proving me wrong Mr Tuff.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Mar 20, 2019 at 5:19 AM

    Comment #36

    Hippy in the best sense Rob. A free spirit and an unfettered soul.

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Mar 20, 2019 at 5:22 AM

    Comment #37

    That’s Killer by the way, not Rasputin. The more I hear about that Rasputin fellow, the less I care for him. 🙂

  • Nicky the ball tosser

    Mar 20, 2019 at 6:08 AM

    Comment #38

    errr, lesh.

  • Lindisfarne

    Mar 20, 2019 at 6:17 AM

    Comment #39

    Lover of the Russian queen
    There was a cat that really was gone
    Russia’s greatest love machine
    It was a shame how he carried on

    Oh, those Russians!

  • Optimistic Panda

    Mar 20, 2019 at 6:25 AM

    Comment #40


    If I was as thick as you I’d keep my mouth shut.

    Suggesting you’re the man from the English Irish scotsman jokes isn’t stereotyping its calling you a thick cnut, you thick cnut! The jokes maybe stereotyping but I didn’t tell a joke, also saying you’ve a enormous chip on your shoulder isn’t stereotyping it’s a fact.

    No wonder you cant understand football.

    Shows how pathetic you are, googling a footballers name from when I was 10 to make out I cant spell, SAD little man.

    English bashing knob head, as I said yesterday


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