Sunderland fans attempted to pour scorn on Rafa Benitez in May 2016.
Laughing as the Champions League, Europa League, double La Liga winning manager ‘relegated’ Newcastle United.
Yes he was at the club when relegation was confirmed but to blame the Spaniard would be ludicrous, just as the case with Alan Shearer seven years earlier.
The relegations were due to all kinds of factors and any number of people responsible BUT with only ten and eight games to turn things around, Benitez and Shearer had near impossible jobs.
When Newcastle fans were jubilant as Rafa Benitez declared his intention in May 2016 and manage in the Championship, the Mackems questioned why you would want a manager who had ‘taken you down’.
Going instantly back up as champions didn’t really silence our neighbours, as they said anything less than winning the second tier title would have been failure for Rafa Benitez.
They met their own relegation with confident calls that it was a rubbish division and no reason why they couldn’t bounce back like Newcastle had…
Just look at this table below. it shows the average points per game won by all English clubs since the start of last (2016/17) season.
In lucky 13th place we have Newcastle United, over the course of these past 20 months and 77 matches, Rafa Benitez has collected an average of 1.68 points per game.
Take out the so called ‘big six’ and only one other club in the top two divisions features in the top 13 positions – Fulham, who are experiencing successive promotion attempts from the Championship.
I know we shouldn’t laugh but just look at who is at the very bottom after their 78 matches in the past 20 months have produced just 0.71 points on average…
The table has been published by @bigchrisholt
As you can see, Manchester City are at the very top with an incredible average of 2.35 points per game, with Tottenham a very credible second on 2.17 points per game.