Rafa Benitez reveals the secret of Newcastle’s success away from home

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez says tenacity and NOT technical ability is behind Newastle United’s record-equalling away form.

Benitez’s side have won 13 away games in the Championship this season.

Saturday’s 3-1 success over third-placed Huddersfield Town saw the league leaders side equal a record set by Kevin Keegan’s team in 1992-93.

And Newcastle – who had a woeful record away from hom last season – could break that record with a win over Reading at the Madejski Stadium tonight.

“If you want to improve anything you need to have the right attitude,” said United manager Benitez.

“In modern football we talk too much about quality, but what is quality?

“It’s not just to stop the ball and put it 40 metres or score a brilliant free-kick, that is technical ability.

“Quality is about doing the right things. To win games you need both effort and attitude.”

United won just one away game in their relegation season.

“The away form was on the list of things I had to find a solution for,” said Benitez.

“But when you have a team that responds to the training sessions and works hard to follow the gameplan it’s easier to approach the games. We’re organised, we press and it’s a lot about effort.

“We have a good balance, we score goals and don’t concede too many. Keeping the ball is fine, but you have to create chances.

“It’s when you have a winning team that you get this balance of scoring and not conceding. Some teams can win scoring goals and conceding but often they have to score a lot.”