Rafa Benitez has been interviewed by Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo, but he doesn’t talk about his long, drawn-out talks with Mike Ashley over the last couple of weeks – which seem like months.
Or the stunning news yesterday that we are in the process of being bought by a billionaire – Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed al-Nahyan -who wants to make Newcastle into a force in football again.
When I woke up early this morning I had to check this was all true and I hadn’t been dreaming …. again.
Yes, it seems to be true, and we expect the deal to complete fairly quickly if it’s true that signed contracts are with the Premier League.
Maybe the holdup could be that Ashley wants to show his Sports Direct adverts at St. James’ Park for a few more years?
The Sheikh should not agree to that and will not because commercial revenue will be one of the areas he needs to increase quickly at the club.
Rafa Benitez – has been fantastic for Newcastle these last three years
This is what Rafa has said:
“It has been a great achievement by all involved. As everyone can see, the Premier League is a difficult league with a high competitive level.”
“That is why we all have to feel satisfied with what we have achieved over the last two years.”
“Balance is key and to get the most out of your players, whether you want to win the Champions League or stay in the division.”
“It depends on the way that someone has chosen to play, one way or another.”
“My teams compete well and, above all, I like to adapt to the conditions that I have.”
“(I’m motivated) because I’m a coach that comes from below.”
“I know what happens inside a changing room, and I like to be out on the training pitch and transmitting something to my players.”
I want to improve them, regardless of the level they are at. I want them to learn to understand the game, so they can be better.”
“It motivates me to achieve the goals I set for myself, whatever they may be.”
“I would say that we [as coaching staff] train better as we look for continuous progress, even more than in Valencia, Liverpool, Inter, Chelsea or Napoli, despite having won titles.”
“We look for the latest technology, methodology or material.”
“Both my assistants and I speak several languages, and that also usually comes to fruition.”
“We can transmit what we want [in several languages] to those who are interested in improving.:
We don’t think there’s any chance the Sheikh will not have Rafa as the manager of Newcastle.
The only real question now is how long this deal will take to complete.
Mike Ashley has never been an easy person to negotiate with – or to work with for that matter.