Sky Sports have been speaking to Rafa Benitez at the club’s training camp in Spain.

The Newcastle boss asked whether the January loan signings of Dubravka and Kenedy would prove to be key to staying up.

Not wanting to pick out individuals, the Newcastle boss repeated one of his favourite strategies/theories.

Rafa Benitez saying that ‘It is always important’ to have competition for as many positions as possible and that ‘obviously’ adding the loan keeper and winger had helped that.

The United boss was also quizzed as to how many points would be needed to survive this season.

Although he said it could be possible that less points may prove to be needed, Rafa believes that forty points is the magical figure to ensure Newcastle remain in the Premier League.

After beating Southampton last weekend, Newcastle moved up to 32 points and 13th positions, so just another eight points needed from eight games according to the manager’s calculations.

Three points against Huddersfield in 14 days time would go a long way towards ensuring that both safety and the 40 points total is reached.

Rafa Benitez asked by Sky Sports how many points Newcastle need:

“Forty, maybe could be less (to stay up), but I think forty is the minimum to guarantee to stay up.”

‘How important was January recruitment of Dubravka and Kenedy, could it be the key to staying up?’

“Obviously it will be very helpful.

“It is always important to have players in the same position and they have to compete, they have to do well (to stay in the team).

“If they do well they push the others to do well at the same time.

“So it is always very positive for the atmosphere and especially when you are winning.”



  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    Without the 2 signings in January we`d be a lot worse off then we are.

    • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

      Well done Mike Ashley for siting that out

      • East Durham Mag

        Yeah he is a top man

    • Jezza

      Yes and we’d also be a lot better off if Rafa had been allowed to bring those two players in when he first wanted them in August.

      • nufcslf

        Yip.

      • Mark Potter

        Conte wouldn’t release Kenedy in the summer, because he wanted first to sign a replacement. So, yes, if Conte had allowed Rafa to bring in Kenedy, we would be better off.

        What evidence do you have that Rafa wanted to bring in Dubravka in August? Google cannot find a single media report linking Dubravka to Newcastle before 10 Jan 2018. So, I guess this is another of your lies.

        • Mal

          The funny thing is Mark the usual suspects were all negative about us trying to get Kenedy in the summer. Seem to have changed their tune.

        • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

          Jezza has a habit of making things up to fit his agenda. There is a fine line between healthy cynicism and being a boring lying troll, Jezza is one side of that line.

  • Lord

    Win at home against Huddersfield and West Brom and we stay up.

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      that`s about the strength of it

    • Toonrobbybobson

      I reckon it will be a harder fixture we’ll pick up 3 points.

      • Lord

        You might be right. No reason we couldn’t nick points off Arsenal at home.

  • pedrodelgardo

    Have Huddersfield T been found out or something?

    • Lord

      They’ve wasted their big chance to make themselves relatively safe with two home games against rivals. If they lose to us, they have to win every other game to beat 38pts. Bear in mind they have Chelsea, Arsenal and Man City left to play, although playing Arsenal at home isn’t the impossible test it used to be.

      I’d be looking at them or Southampton to blow it. Stoke look almost down after today with their remaining fixtures.

      • Alreet

        Both saints and stoke are all but done. Cannot see them pulling clear with the fixtures theyve got.

  • nufcslf

    So that would be 40 points this season, next season and the season after that and so on and so on until relegation.
    The Mickey Mouse Club would be hard pressed to give this sh*t show a run for its money…….if there was any……..F**k off Cashley you c**t.

    • East Durham Mag

      Very nicely put.

      • Geordiegiants

        Indeed!

    • gallowgate26

      Sadly, apart from about eight clubs, everyone is just trying to get 40 points, I
      would even class Everton in that this season and possibly Leicester,
      Watford and Burnley.

  • Geordiegiants

    I’m shocked 😱. 40 points honestly?????

  • ghostrider

    To be honest I think 36 points is safety.
    I think Watford are safe on 36 as it stands right now.
    All those below them are in a relegation fight until they reach 36 points.

    Let’s see if I’m correct come the end of the season.
    In my opinion a win against Huddersfield and just 1 more point from any of the remaining games will be enough for us.
    4 simple points that even we can’t mess up.

    What does anyone think?

    • Mal

      You could be right as there are a few games where the teams involved have to play each other so someone has to drop points. It’s not a theory that I want us to test though as just 2 wins and a draw ( from 7 or. 8 games) would take a lot of teams past 36 points. I’m hoping we’re mathematically safe after the West Brom game – fingers crossed we don’t take it to the wire, too much stress. Our GD is also worth an extra point at the moment.