The Swansea v Newcastle Press Conference has taken place on Friday lunchtime, with Francisco de Míguel Moreno (AKA Paco) standing in for Rafa Benitez.

Paco is Rafa’s assistant manager and has been part of his backroom team at a host of clubs, including Real Madrid and Liverpool.

With Rafa still recovering from surgery,  Paco (pictured with Rafa above) has taken training this week as well.

Apart from the United boss not being able to make it, it was otherwise pretty much all good news.

It had been feared that Chancel Mbemba would be out for between one and three months after comments from the DR Congo doctor but Paco says whilst he will miss Sunday, Mbemba could be back for Stoke next Saturday.

The NUFC assistant manager also confirmed that Shelvey and Gayle would be available, the midfielder back from suspension and the number nine back in contention after ‘confidence’ issues saw him left out of the West Ham matchday 18.

Paco also stated that both Yedlin and Lejeunce could be selected against Swansea, as the pair have been back in full training this week.

First quotes from the Paco Swansea v Newcastle Press Conference:

“Rafa Benitez will try to be at Swansea, wants to be here and we know his commitment to his club and profession.

“Rafa is ok. He had a small operation on Monday and he is recovering. He will be fine in a few days.

“He has been on the phone as he normally does. We are in touch and we are preparing every single detail for the match together.

 “We are still doing the same stuff we do when Rafa is here. It is different when he is here but it is all under control.

Mikel (Merno) and Jonjo (Shelvey) have been training well. We have a training session tomorrow and after that, we will decide on the team.

“Dwight has been training well and will be part of the squad. DeAndre is working hard to be ready. He and Florian are training fully.

 “Chancel is not too bad but will miss the game. Reading newspapers, it sounded a bad injury but we don’t think so, he’ll miss the game but be ready for the next one.

“Swansea are a good side with a good manager. It will be tough. We have to have the same commitment and passion as the last game.”



  • Jimblag23

    That is very good Mbemba news.

    • Peaky Magpie

      Yes he’s definitely more suited to the Premier League than the Championship.

      • Martin Rooney

        How do you know he never really got a chance did well when played he’s a good player full stop

  • Guest 2

    Good piece by George Culkin (Times). “He is not Newcastle’s owner, he is its illness.”

    • Lord

      Love the quote: “…a regime with an allergy to consecutive good decisions.”

      • Monkseaton Magpies

        He is a scum bag who hates Newcastle with a passion was at the Irish centre last night and he must be Margret Thactcher’s son he hates us so much. Have contacted the club to ban him for life.
        Any one at the Irish centre last night you spoke up for Ashley got evicted by him what a sad person.

    • Monkseaton Magpies

      Glad to see you support a paper which hates the North East which not only
      helped closing down the mines and the ship yards. Are you Dennis Thatcher
      Margaret son George Culkin hates Newcastle with a passion and should be be banned from the stadium. Was at the Irish centre last night and he was a disgrace and had a pro Ashley supported evicted from the room a total disgrace never ever thought this site would support a paper which has hated us for one hundred years

      • Guest 2

        What an utter moron you are.

      • Tynewalker

        I can’t believe what you have written. George Caulkin is a good journalist who was excellent at the Irish Centre He is clearly sympathetic to us as supporters and came across very passionate. Whatever the politics of The Times is he made it very clear that his own politics were not of a similar nature.
        I find it unbelievable to see such a twisted view of that very good event.
        I expect you are very vocal about democracy yet you would have Caulkin banned from the ground. Who would do that? Oh I know Ashley, he already has banned journalists.

        • Martin Rooney

          Culkin is a toon hater doing his best to create division between fans and the club. His match reports are often like he was never there. He slates lascelles for his passion the way he did with Steven Taylor. But let’s remember this is a man who makes his living out of Newcastle united and does do by creating hassle for it to sell papers and profit for Rupert Murdoch.
          Nuff said

        • Monkseaton Magpies

          He had pro Ashley fans ejected from the Irish centre for telling the truth that Mike had paid off thirty six million pounds of debt off on old transfer fees a true fact. He could not take it so got that person evicted from the Irish centre. Have contacted the club for him to be banned he is a dangerous journalist who winds fans up against the club.

  • Wor Lass

    Some good news, at least. I wonder what the SP is on Dummy?

    • Mark Spark

      did i not hear he was out until till november?Certainly a shame for him,i know some fans dont like him,but Rafa does and so do I.Most appearances last year while everyone else was rotated.kept 2 or 3 other left fullbacks from even having a sniff. Rumoured premiership interest every transfer window.And it seemed Rafa wasnt looking to replace him.not sure why he gets so much stick

      • Wor Lass

        I agree, Mark – but I think he turned it around last season. I like the lad but I must admit I would like us to bring in a specialist LB. Competition is a good thing and injuries always disrupt things.

  • Paul Busby

    So glad “Lejeunce” is back xD

  • magpiefifer

    A bit surprised that Rafa didn’t have his op until Monday.Must have been a good reason.

  • Leazes Ender

    Excellent news for the ‘bus’