Rafa Benitez reveals the philosophy behind his 'rotation' at Newcastle

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez says he will rotate his Newcastle United players throughout the season – as he doesn't have to take any risks.

Benitez will again change a winning team on Saturday, when Wolverhampton Wanderers visit St James's Park.

Newcastle beat Queens Park Rangers 6-0 at Loftus Road on Tuesday night to move within a point of Championship leaders Huddersfield Town.

But a number of players, including leading scorer Dwight Gayle, are pushing for recalls to the starting XI.

United invested in the medical department in the summer – long-serving doctor Paul Catterson was also persuaded to stay at St James's Park – and Benitez is hopeful that the number of days lost to injury can be reduced.

As it stands, Newcastle have just two players – Rob Elliot and Rolando Aarons – out with long-term injuries.

“We are trying to change some things," said Benitez.

"Part of it is to change players to give them more rest by rotating them. We don’t need to risk any players. The medical department work very hard and we have a new fitness coach, a new physio and we have a very good atmosphere between them.

"They are all working hard together, we try to manage the situation with them.

"Sometimes when you have a player with a little problem, the doctor can tell you it is risk so we can make sure we don’t take the risk and play someone else.

"If you push players then maybe they can get injured and we are trying to manage this.

"At the moment it is working fine. During the game you cant control it, like you see Rolando’s injury. Some of the injuries you cant control. If you can manage the load on the players then you can keep them fitter."