Rafa Benitez makes transfer window pledge at Newcastle

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez today insisted that Newcastle United WILL be stronger by the time the transfer window closes.

Benitez's side have lost their first two Championship fixtures.

And Newcastle take on Reading at St James's Park tomorrow night in desperate need of a morale-boosting victory.

The club has signed eight senior players so far this summer.

But United manager Benitez is hopeful of more arrivals before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

There will also be departures, with Benitez wanting to focus on the players he feels can make a contribution in the Championship.

"At the end of the transfer window, we will be stronger," he said. "That is clear.

"We have some players we know will leave. We will have a stronger squad."

Newcastle are waiting for offers for a clutch of fringe players.

Asked about unsettled midfielder Cheick Tiote, Benitez added: "To be fair we have four or five players on the radar of some clubs. We are waiting."

United were the pre-season favourites to win the Championship.

But Benitez says the first two games have underlined just how "difficult" it will be to win promotion.

“Newcastle United is a very strong team, a very strong club, but you have other clubs which are also strong and they have experience in the Championship – that means it will be very difficult," he said.

“Everybody was expecting that we could win every game by three goals, and we know it wouldn't be like this. We never said it would be like a walk."

“We know we have to keep working hard, we know we have to have confidence in ourselves, but at the same time we know we are strong and we have have to show this on the pitch.