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.”