Rafa Benitez says no excuses for Mike Ashley on transfers now he has been to first Newcastle match in 13 months
Rafa Benitez has been talking about Mike Ashley turning up at the match on Saturday.
The Newcastle United owner was sat alongside Lee Charnley, as well as close Ashley associates Justin Barnes and Keith Bishop, the pair who have no official public roles at St James Park but who are widely reported to be the ones who pull the strings at NUFC on behalf of the owner.
Rafa says that he knew in advance that Mike Ashley was coming to the game.
It was the first Newcastle game the owner had attended in 13 months, the last one being the home defeat to Tottenham back in August 2017.
The Newcastle manager can see only positives in the NUFC owner turning up.
Rafa saying that the team needs everybody’s support, starting with the owner.
More importantly, Benitez says that now Mike Ashley has actually come and seen the team play, there can be no excuses now in terms of not realising what the position is, and that the owner has to support him in the transfer market.
“I like to see the owner (Mike Ashley) supporting the team.
“It’s not me (he has come to support), it is the team.
“We have to be sure that everybody supports the team, starting with the owner.
“If it is like that, then as I have said before, we will be stronger.
“I have to take this as a positive.
“If he comes to see the team, he can see the players, what we have…
“Hopefully (now) he can be more sensible and he will be ready to do something (in January) if we need to do it.
“I knew he was coming and I would have no problem speaking to him after this.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
Crystal Palace 0 Newcastle 0
Possession was Palace 62% Newcastle 38%
Total shots were Palace 16 Newcastle 6
Shots on target were Palace 4 Newcastle 3
Corners were Palace 9 Newcastle 5
Referee: Andre Marriner
Dubravka, Yedlin, Lascelles, Fernandez, Dummett, Ritchie (Atsu 73), Diame, Shelvey, Kenedy, Perez (Muto 81), Rondon (Joselu 46)
Darlow, Manquillo, Clark, Ki
Crowd: 25,679 (2,900 Newcastle approx)
(Alan Shearer reacts to Newcastle’s 0-0 draw at Palace – Read HERE)
(Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to the goalless draw with Crystal Palace – Read HERE)
(Mike Ashley turns up and gets the full treatment! – Read HERE)
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