Chris Hughton did a remarkable job bringing Newcastle United back from the brink of disaster, only to be rewarded with the sack by Mike Ashley.
Put in charge as only caretaker manager of a shattered and unmotivated squad in summer 2009, with Mike Ashley selling anybody he had an offer for and not allowing a single player to be bought, Hughton went on to accumulate 102 points to lead Newcastle out of the Championship and stabilised them in mid-table of the Premier League.
This time things look very different, the same ridiculous running of the club has led to another relegation under Ashley but seemingly he has realised that this is the end of the road for his way of doing things.
Wednesday brought confirmation that Rafa Benitez has been guaranteed ‘full control’ of football matters at Newcastle United and Chris Hughton that this arrangement is a ‘major coup’ for Newcastle United.
A popular figure with Newcastle fans, Hughton says that Rafa will give the club stability and he says his players must look forward to playing a club like Newcastle because ‘they don’t come much bigger in the Championship’.
Having met Rafa Benitez in the past, Chris Hughton is looking forward to seeing him again, describing him as a ‘proper football person’.
I wonder how he would describe Parder, Carver and McClaren…?
Chris Hughton speaking to The Argus:
“It gives Newcastle that little bit of stability – they haven’t got to go out and get someone else.
“Rafa Benitez has done very well in a short period of time there. It is a major coup for the club and there is no doubt it makes the division stronger.
“As a player you always want to play against the best teams and the bigger clubs. They don’t come much bigger in the Championship than Newcastle, so it’s one for the players to look forward to.”
“I have met him on a couple of occasions. Whenever I have spoken to him he is a proper football person.
“He loves the game and he loves the English game.
“I am certainly looking forward to coming up against him. It will be tough, because they are a good outfit.”