Rafa Benitez nominated for Premier League manager of the season award after guiding Newcastle to safety

Rafa Benitez has been nominated for the Premier League's Barclays Manager of the Season award after guiding Newcastle United to Premier League safety
Rafa BenitezRafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

The promoted club secured its top-flight status last month with five games left to play.

And United manager Benitez and Pep Guardiola – who guided Manchester City to the league title – are on a six-man shortlist for the prestigious award.

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Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool), Sean Dyce (Burnley), Chris Hughton (Brighton and Hove Albion) and Roy Hodgson (Crystal Palace) have also been nominated.

Newcastle are 10th in the table ahead of this afternoon's game against Watford at Vicarage Road.

Guardiola last month said that Benitez and Dyce would both be deserving winners of the award.

“Believe me, if the Burnley manager, my colleagues, or, for example, Rafa Benitez at Newcastle – he’s made an amazing job – won it, great," said Guardiola.

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“For example, (Liverpool's Mohamed) Salah is (named) the best player – I’m not going to say it’s unfair. But if they say Kevin (de Bruyne), I’m not going to say it’s unfair too.

“There are many, many players and many managers who deserve that. You know my opinion about that. It’s a collective game. It isn’t tennis or golf. A lot of people are involved in our success – the reason why is a lot.

“I’m sitting in front of you , it looks like I’m more important. But it’s more important how you help the players to play well.”

Burnley are seventh in the Premier League table, while Brighton, promoted with Newcastle last season, secured their Premier League status last night with a win over Manchester United.