Get your daily update and weekly newsletter by signing up today!


Great timing as Les Ferdinand claims Rafa Benitez stayed at Newcastle ‘because he was able to call the shots’

5 years ago

When asked about Newcastle United, Les Ferdinand put his professional head on.

The former Newcastle number nine (and ten!) saying that he doesn’t think about returning to St James Park as being special anymore, that it is all just about ‘getting the job done’ with QPR.

He says that in 24 hours time it will be different, ‘After we play Newcastle, good luck to Newcastle’, but that tonight is only about the three points.

Les Ferdinand spent two brilliant seasons at Newcastle, both years United finishing second in the Premier League, including the ‘so close’ one in 1995/96.

He was brilliant for NUFC and hard to believe that in a few months time it will be 20 years since Hall and Shepherd stupidly sold him because of his age.

Does anybody believe that after two runners-up spots, Newcastle would have dropped to 13th in 1997/98 if they had kept Sir Les.

QPR of course isn’t just any other club to Les Ferdinand either, having spent eight years there as a player and now two as Director of Football, little wonder he is desperate to see the West London club succeed.

Great timing as well, that as the January transfer window was closing, the former striker said that ‘Rafa Benitez stayed there (Newcastle) because he was able to call the shots’.

The failure of the club to bring in any of Rafa Benitez’ targets leading some Newcastle fans to start wondering, just how much control the United boss really has.

Les Ferdinand speaking to the London Evening Standard:

“People say that (returning to Newcastle is a special one), I had a good time while I was at St James Park but I don’t think of it like that anymore.

“I just think about QPR going there and getting the job done and getting points.

“After we play Newcastle, good luck to Newcastle, but while we’re playing Newcastle I want QPR to get three points.

“Newcastle were the side that everybody expected to bounce straight back – they spent a load of money and it’s telling.

“They have got a good manager in place, they worked wonders to keep him there  – Rafa Benitez stayed there because he was able to call the shots.

“We know it’s going to be tough but we are on a bit of a run at the moment and we want to continue that run – we want to be looking upwards instead of downwards.”


If you would like to feature on The Mag, submit your article to [email protected]

Have your say

© 2022 The Mag. All Rights Reserved. Design & Build by Mediaworks