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Rafa Benitez Leicester press conference: Praises Kevin Keegan and says happy to see Mike Ashley around

3 years ago

Rafa Benitez has met the media ahead of the Leicester game on Saturday.

Newcastle looking for the win that could take them out of the relegation zone.

Maybe summing up the state of the club, the fact that the club’s owner turning up at a match is a talking point, sums it up.

Mike Ashley turned up at Selhurst Park last Saturday and Rafa says it is a positive if Ashley is more involved.

When asked about Kevin Keegan’s new book, the Newcastle boss was full of praise for what Keegan achieved at the club as both player and manager, saying that if the KK book is good, he will give it a read.

Rafa confirmed that Salomon Rondon is out for at least a couple of weeks, effectively meaning until at least three weeks time on 20 October (home v Brighton), due to the international break.

Rafa Benitez press conference pre-Leicester:

“We want to win and we want to start winning games in a row. Every game is an opportunity – this one is at home, and we know we’ll have more chances to win here than in another stadium.

“Against Palace, they had the last two chances but we had control. There were some situations where, if we were a bit better with the final pass, we could have been in front of the ‘keeper and had some good chances.

“I’m not worried if one player misses a chance – I’m worried if he doesn’t go where he has to be.

“I have confidence the team will score goals – we did in the past and we will do it again.”

On Salomon Rondon:

“Rondón cannot play (against Leicester).

“We have to assess him next week and see how he is getting on.

“He felt something in the warm-up (against Crystal Palace). He wanted to impress, but he couldn’t.

“Now, he is injured and we have to manage with the rest of the players.

“A couple of weeks he might be out for but he has not been fully fit for us yet.”

Read Kevin Keegan’s upcoming autobiography?:

Kevin Keegan was great here and I would like to do as well as he did here.

“Amazing as a player, as a manager.

“But I am so focused on my team that I do not have time to read what is going on but if it is a good book, I will read it.”

 When will Muto start a match?:

“You never know.

“It could be tomorrow…but it is (just) a matter of time.

 “I told him that he needs to adapt to the contact of defenders – he has went to the floor easily and thought he should have had a free-kick.

“He needs to understand more English but he is doing well.”

On Mike Ashley coming to matches:

“If the owner wants to be around, it is a positive.

“I don’t have a problem with that.”

Important meeting post-Leicester?:

“We have not spoken directly this week but I spoke to Lee Charnley yesterday and that is how we usually talk.

“I met the recruitment team yesterday, then we will have a meeting with scouts to see what we want, it is a normal meeting and not a special one.”


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