Jonjo Shelvey says that since the latest change of Manager/Head Coach at St James Park, all the players feel like they are being under extra scrutiny and it is ‘like you’re on trial’.
(No doubt a fair few Newcastle fans think that some of the players should be up in court on trial for some of their performances this season…)
Shelvey is one of those who should feel the most at home under Rafa Benitez, having played under him at Liverpool after the Spaniard signed him from Charlton.
Summing up the problems of Mike Ashley leaving it so late before ditching Steve McClaren, Jonjo Shelvey says that this two week international break will at last give Benitez and his squad time to sort things, considering that within a nine day period after taking over, Rafa Benitez has already had a game against the league leaders and a bitter local derby to contend with.
Talking more positively about the remaining matches, Jonjo Shelvey says that by the time the Norwich game comes along in 11 days time, Rafa Benitez ‘will come up with a game plan’ to get the best out of the players he has inherited.
The consensus amongst fans after the Sunderland game, was that Newcastle had been poor but that Rafa Benitez had been able to rouse his team in the final half hour with the substitutions and change of tactics. Something that no doubt supporters believe wouldn’t have happened under Steve McClaren.
Fingers crossed that as Shelvey claims, the players are listening to the new manager and ‘being a lot busier than normal’.
Jonjo Shelvey talking to BBC Newcastle:
“You’re always being watched, you feel like you’re on trial.
“Everyone is looking to impress and being a lot busier than normal.
“But that is part and parcel of football, you need to show what you’re about.
“When a new manager comes in, it is like going to school again.
“People are listening to what he says – his record speaks for itself.
“It (international break) will be a good chance to really knuckle down. We have not had much time since he has come in because everything has been a bit rushed.
“Rafa will come up with a game plan because that’s what he does – I’m sure we’ll go to Norwich and give a very good account of ourselves.”