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Rafa Benitez on Newcastle fan protests “They know what is best for the team, I am not here to tell them what to do”

2 years ago

Rafa Benitez met the media on Friday lunchtime.

The Newcastle boss a happy man as he looks to make it four wins in a row against West Ham.

However, as well as the usual questions on the opponents and injuries, the manager was quizzed about the protests planned by Newcastle fans.

Supporters asked not to take their seat until the 11th minute of the West Ham game, then boycott the Wolves game totally.

A rallying call from The Magpie Group reminding fans and media of the protests, going out as a press release (see below), just ahead of Rafa’s press conference.

When asked today about the protests, Rafa Benitez said:

“Our fans have been really good.

“Especially at this last game at Burnley.

“They know what is best for the team. I am not here to tell them what to do.

“I have a lot of respect for our fans, hopefully we will enjoy another three points together (against West Ham).”

A small but significant departure today, as previously when asked the question, Rafa has simply said he wants to see the fans supporting the team.

He obviously is never going to say he wants the fans to protest but I have no doubts as to where his sympathies lie.

The Mag – Earlier Today (Friday 30 November 2018):

The Magpie Group have sent out a press release on Friday.

Coordinating protests against Mike Ashley, they are calling on Newcastle fans to support the demonstration against the NUFC owner on Saturday.

Supporters are asked to not take their seats until the 11th minute of the West Ham match, marking the 11 wasted years of Ashley’s ownership.

There is also a reminder that tomorrow’s protest is then followed eight days later, when fans are being asked to support a complete boycott of the Wolves match.

Press release from The Magpie Group:



The Magpie Group have called upon Newcastle United supporters to refrain from taking their seats at the West Ham match on Saturday 1st December until the 11th minute in protest at the 11 wasted years of Mike Ashley’s tenure as Chairman at the club.

The Group believe that December represents their last chance to apply significant pressure upon the owner to support Rafa Benitez in the forthcoming January transfer window, amid concerns that the manager will not renew his contract when it expires next summer unless he receives backing.

The protest this Saturday will be followed by a proposed boycott of the game against Wolves at St James’s Park which will be televised by Sky Sports on 9th December.

A Group spokesman said:

“We encourage fans to take a stand in this fixture and in the game against Wolves, where we propose a full boycott.

“We know this is painful for Newcastle supporters to do but, for the longer term future of the club, it’s time to tell those at the top that enough is enough”


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