Saturday was yet another none too subtle reminder for Rafa Benitez as to the lack of quality he has in the creative and goalscoring departments.

For the fifth time in the last six home games his side failed to score a goal at home, with only a very small handful of chances created against a Brighton side who were marginally the better team.

Rafa Benitez says ‘The fans appreciate the effort that the players are putting in on the pitch’.

However, he followed that up with ‘Now we will see if we can do something in January and bring in some help for this group of players’.

If better quality isn’t added in the next month, Newcastle are clearly going to continue to struggle to score goals, and be at serious risk of relegation.

The press have claimed that West Ham are trying to sign Jonjo Shelvey and when asked about that, the United boss said: ‘If we don’t bring in players, it will be very difficult to lose players. Even if they are not happy, they still have to keep working and try to give their best for this team’.

After being  a key man in the promotion campaign, not many fans would have predicted that he’d be struggling to get a game, but Shelvey has clearly not impressed Rafa Benitez.

Even if Rafa can land players that he wants, it would appear inconceivable that Newcastle would consider selling a player to one of the few teams that look as weak as they do.

Rafa Benitez:

“The team is working hard, that is what you expect from these players.

“We did not play at the level we maybe can play but credit to Brighton because they were well organised and managed the tempo of the game quite well.

“Their keeper was busy but we could not score and could not get the three points, that was the main thing for us.

“Brighton are well organised. Our decision making has to be better in the final third.

“I could see Bruno all the time telling them calm down, calm down. Slow the tempo. That’s experience.

“They know what they are doing. In the second half we were pushing, we were trying.

“The fans appreciate the effort that the players are putting in on the pitch.

“Now we will see if we can do something in January and bring in some help for this group of players.

“We have to keep doing our job and hopefully we will keep doing what we need to do.”

Rafa Benitez asked if Jonjo Shelvey could be sold to West Ham:

“If we don’t bring in players, it will be very difficult to lose players.

“Even if they are not happy, they still have to keep working and try to give their best for this team.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Newcastle 0 Brighton 0

Possession was Brighton 55% Newcastle 45%

Total shots were  Brighton 10 Newcastle 11

Shots on target were Brighton 3 Newcastle 2

Corners were  Brighton 6 Newcastle 3

Referee: Anthony Taylor

Newcastle United:

Darlow, Yedlin, Lascelles, Clark, Dummett, Ritchie (Perez 72), Hayden, Merino (Shelvey 76), Atsu, Joselu (Murphy 84), Gayle

Unused Subs:

Woodman, Manquillo, Mbemba, Diame

Crowd: 52,209 (2,200 Brighton)

(Mark Hughes admits throwing Chelsea match with 7 changes to focus on Newcastle – Read HERE)

(The most worrying thing about Newcastle’s performance – Read HERE)

(Give us your NUFC player ratings from the Brighton match HERE)

(Read the match ratings from the goalless draw HERE)

  • TheNutJob

    So it appears Jonjo isn`t happy reading between the lines,
    i think there`s few more unhappy as well. i wish Rafa would just pick his best 11 and stick with it

  • TheNutJob

    Palace 0-0 with Man C. Palace missed a penalty late on

  • Paul Patterson

    It’s not even reading between the lines to understand that Rafa is saying Shelvey isn’t happy. He said it plain as day.
    Sadly the position were in, we need every decent player we have.

    • Geordiegiants

      If Shelvey played the game he wouldn’t be unhappy, he has put himself in that predicament.

  • ghostrider

    I think Rafa is slowly but surely losing the dressing room.
    I think the players he’s banishing to the doldrums is having a very negative effect on the remaining players playing his negative nonsense.

    Get rid of this parasite that masquerades as a football manager.

    • Duh

      You know nothing about football mate

      • ghostrider

        Another one who thinks playing football is some kind of complicated science.
        Let me put it simple to you.
        Football is a very simple game that has been turned into a scientific bunch of nonsense.

        The simple aim of the game is to score more than the opposition but kicking the football, or heading it, or any way you can, apart from arms and hands, past the goal keepers whilst players are trying to stop you.

        When you don’t have the ball your job is to stop them.
        Very simple.

        • Geordiegiants

          Every single successful manager builds from the back , just ask Keegan.

          • ghostrider

            Where did you pluck that from?
            Let me tell you something
            Every successful manager builds all over by balance.

            And don’t try and say it as though rafa is some kind of defence building genius.
            He’s swapped and messed with ours more times than a wind change and we’ve looked a mixture of decent to reasonable to bad to a shambles.

            Rafa is a gonk. He’s had his time and that’s why Real Madrid booted him out sharpish….because he’s way out of his depth as a football manager/coach.

            Mr team killing negative.

          • Duh

            Who would you appoint then mr premier league football is simply about scoring more goals than the other team

          • ghostrider

            I’d appointany manager that wants to assemble a team that goes out to try and win every game.
            I don’t mean a manager that goes out to try and score 10 goals a game. Just a manager that gets a team to use every ounce of their talent to try and effect a win.
            If we get beat a good few times in that process… what.
            Guess what?
            At least we tried and we were entertained in doing so.
            From then you build with players that can keep it all as balanced as possible.

            Rafa is playing a lopsided game where misery is his key ingredient for watching fans and his own player confidence.

            The man is a clown.

          • Duh

            Ah, like John carver, I see.

          • Mitros gotta start

            Now who is the one that knows nothing?
            Clueless dolt

          • ghostrider

            Like anyone with the right players who can command respect and create harmony.

          • Wor Lass

            Come on, name a name! Who would you bring in? Keep it realistic, though, and remember who the owner is.

          • hetonmag

            That idiot mentioned Bilic before when I asked him or was it Silva or was it Dyche they are the names he put forward.

          • Wor Lass

            I`d genuinely like to know who people think is available/would come under current circumstances. There may be someone out there – we are an attractive option in many ways. But that`s why Rafa came and stayed. He needs a period of solid backing before we can judge him fairly. He`s not above criticism and there`s a fair bit I`m not happy about but he hasn`t had a fair crack of the whip yet.

          • hetonmag

            Everyone has an opinion but calling a man who has been around the block a gonk or a clown is the sort of rhetoric you would get off Mackem’s.

          • Tony Mann

            Under the current regime it would be the return of Zorro better known as Carver (or Shteve) to save us from the cruel despotic owner.

          • Mitros gotta start

            Silva dyche or howe….and it was me

          • hetonmag

            Two idiots to pick from and I picked the wrong one gee whiz.

          • Mitros gotta start

            you are about as good as rafa is at picking a team

          • ghostrider

            Two managers in an instant.
            Ronald Koeman or Slaven Bilic.

          • Wor Lass

            They`re both decent enough, especially Koeman, but the rider is, “under the same owner/regime”. Both of them had money to spend but, ultimately, they failed.

          • ghostrider

            They didn’t fail.

          • Wor Lass

            They failed to keep their jobs!

          • degs01

            Numpty – both Koeman and Bilic failed and were sacked this season. Compare their record of successes against Rafa’s

          • ghostrider

            They didn’t fail. They were failed by their owners.

          • Geordiegiants

            I just made it up.

          • hetonmag

            Real Madrid booted him out as you say, but they chose him to manage probably best club in the world what does that tell you. He comes to our basket case of a club to try and somehow make us a success of it and you have a fan the likes of you calling him a gonk you make me sick.

          • ghostrider

            I don’t care what you think of me. Rafa Benitez is a gonk.
            He’s a negative waste of space that has been found out as a has been and who is too stubborn to alter his ways.

            The players most likely despise him in the main.
            A manager that actually coaches the talent out of players rather than enhance the talent they have.

          • skarabrae

            You have absolutely zero knowledge about football!!

          • Coach Clagnut

            The recent spate of hateful, ignorant, spiteful bile spewed in the direction of Benitez is just a coincidence surely?

          • Albert Stubbins

            The defence is the only part of the team that has by and large looked solid. I agree that he has tinkered too much but with lascelles in the background four with either Clarke or membeba it has looked fairly solid.

          • ghostrider

            The defence has looked fairly reasonable, I agree but to be fair it’s been aided by another added defence that’s supposed to be the midfield and attack.
            If the truth be known we’ve rode our luck in many games and some we’ve still lost but others we’ve scraped through due to stifling the opposition which is despicable when done at home over 90% of the game.

            There has to be a balance and Rafa cannot just keep playing dire and negative football and have is masquerading as some kind of organised defensive genius.

            I used to be a glass half full person, always. I used to say that no matter what I will never look at a Newcastle game and see us as losing.
            I always had hope for a win against anyone.

            Heart ruling my head, I know but now I’m slowly getting destroyed by a manager that has ground me down to such a state where I now look at games and wonder how long we will last before we get truly turned over.

            I have zero confidence in Rafa to do anything for this club other than take his wages and produce dire football as well as destroying the harmony of the players.

            It’s happening as we speak and I believe the Stoke Game will highlight just how bad it’s got.

            Rafa Benitez is living on a transfer window and has been ever since his garbage tactics were found out.

            To think he’s going to get money to spend is pretty frightening.
            But you know what?
            I have no option but to sit back and hope he somehow buys the right players and actually uses them in the right way.
            that means that a decent striker has to be used as a striker and not a runaround headless chicken for the defensive cause.

            I’m mumbling on again like a right whining git, which I am….BUT…….WELL…..I just hope Rafa is able to stick his fingers up aat me and shout ” see, I told you to be patient and I’d get it right as I go.”
            I’d love that but from what I actually observe…I don’t see anywhere where it even looks like forward thinking.
            I see backwardness as it stands.

        • Duh

          Not sure how you got there from what I said. But clearly construing stuff from your own imagination is something you are good at per your original post.

          • ghostrider

            I just smile when people like you tell others that they don’t know football.
            A leather ball kicked about by 22 people and turned into a robotic game of chess with silly analysts pointing pens at screens about mistakes and marking and do it every week as if nobody takes any notice of the mistakes made.

            Football is a simple game. A simple game.

          • Geordiegiants

            No need for pep at Citeh then?

          • ghostrider

            Not really, no.

          • Geordiegiants

            Ha ha ha ha ha lol! Your a belta you.
            I think you are the mighty Clarko.

        • Coach Clagnut

          If it’s so simple why don’t teams still play the old W formation. After all, it was the only way everybody played for decades. 5 forwards 3 in midfield and 2 full backs.
          Now try suggesting to anyone involved in coaching the game at any level that the W still has merit and I think you’ll be taken for a day release nutter who wanders in to football games and talks fluent gibberish.
          Of course the game’s complicated. The principle is straight forward that I grant you, 11 v. 11 and who scores the most wins. It’s how you apply the 11 to play that is the hallmark of modern coaching. You study the opposition endlessly, noting the individual merits and how they all knit together as a team. Who plays for 90 minutes, who’s second touch is a tackle, then conceive a game plan to negate their talent and exploit their perceived weaknesses. Then consider the formation they use, how it contrasts with the way you want to play and who will play where to carry out your game plan. There’s always a game plan and it’s never simple.

          To persist with the notion of modern football being a simple game suggests to me that you’re still hedging your bets on the earth being flat.

          • ghostrider

            The game is a simple game that is turned into scientific hype.

      • Mitros gotta start

        Neither do you…..eating grass, making wool and getting scuttled by welshmen you are an expert in though

        • Duh

          Ha ha, so witty

      • Cuh

        Maybe he was a bit harsh in saying we should get rid of Rafa, but he’s right. Rafa is losing the dressing room. The fanfare of a glorious manager, the belief we can overachieve, it’s all dying out.

        • hetonmag

          How is he losing the dressing room you can’t complain about the effort the lads are putting in they just aren’t good enough unfortunately.

        • Duh

          what? Promotion at the first time of asking, working with a poor squad etc etc.

          You don’t win what he has in his careeer and then suddenly become inept.

          And what evidence is there that he is losing the dressing room? The players work hard and do what he has told them to do.

    • skarabrae


    • Tony Mann

      Get rid of this parasite that masquerades as a football club owner.

      • ghostrider

        Far from a parasite.

        • Tony Mann

          Not far enough.

  • Arty Hume

    Sorry to say but it looks like NUFC will be limited in the transfer window to 10m deals while the others around us will buy their way out of trouble with multiple buys. We will be left with what no other club wants AGAIN, unless this deal has somehow gone through under the wire. If there is no cash injection for players it really shows the contempt the owner has for the club and fans, and shows he is not a fit and proper owner of a football club, which makes a mockery ( again ) of what he said about wanting a decent owner to take over from him. Smoke and mirrors again, he will hang on for the EPL money in February, take that and let the club go down in a spiral to emulate Sunderland. Rafa will leave and we will again get some puppet to do as the others have done……how many season tickets will be sold for next year in the Championship???

    • Geordiegiants

      Let’s keep hoping not, but it’s looking increasingly likely.

    • Duh

      Not sure anyone knows for sure. I think the best bet is the loan market.

    • Nut

      Not sure what you think is the definition of a fit and proper owner ? Obviously yours would be someone that comes in and spends hundreds of millions they don’t have dragging the club into debt. Or a billionaire that is willing to plough money in for fun (in your dreams) realistically the former is far more likely to happen.

      The fit and proper owner checks are done to make sure people are not likely to asset strip and will leave the club without debts.

      Ashley in this respect as much as you might derise him for refusing to spend is a fit and proper owner.

      Would you rather go back to the days of Shepherd a man that nearly ended up killing the club by taking millions out and bankrolling the club by building up massive debts?

      Remember as much as you might hate Ashley the truth is without him this club most likely wouldn’t be here now and that is a fact!

  • MadMag83

    Sounds like a sell before you buy instruction has been passed down from Jabba via Penfold again.

  • Geordiegiants

    There is not one single player in our ranks that I would not sell, not one of them are reall top quality, Shelvey could be if he sorted out his attitude, apart from him all of them are replaceable.

    • Mitros gotta start

      I would keep merino, lascelles and atsu

      • Geordiegiants

        I agree, I’m not saying they aren’t decent players for what we have, but there are plenty of players that could easily replace them if we sold them.

        • Paul Patterson

          Every player in the squad has a flaw. Either potential, prospect, mentality or just plain poor.
          It’s simply a Championship squad (that stumbled over the line) that wasn’t sufficiently added to with quality . .

    • Duh

      Yeah, they are all pretty average. Good, honest guys most of them but not world beaters. No real revelation there.

  • Mike

    tripe football = relagation

    • Mitros gotta start

      Clueless liar of a manager that has no idea how to work in a relegation battle with average players and leaves his best players at home = relegation

      • Chris

        Congrats on being the Donald Trump of Newcastle supporters.

        • Mitros gotta start

          I am the president of newcastle supporters….why thank you

  • 1957

    I know a scout for a Championship team who suggested the club had an acceptable bid for Mitrovic and the player and the buying club wanted to complete as soon as the window opens, but Benitez won’t sanction the move until he has a replacement through the door. The resulting disagreement between Mitrovic and Benitez over the move (that might not happen) led to the former’s back injury.

    • Michael Ridley

      If Rafa off loads Shelvey,and Mitrovitch,say £15m total ,being realistic ,that will be £15m from Ashley maybe,£30m that will be Rafa’s transfer money ,no wonder he won’t sell till replacements are here, I agree with a fellow supporter, I can count on one hand how many decent players are premiership quality ,happy new year to all