Rafa Benitez reveals his view on this unwanted Newcastle record
Rafa Benitez wants to be a record breaker at Newcastle United '“ and end the club's dismal Monday night record.
The club, which takes on Burnley at Turf Moor tonight, has lost its last 10 Monday night games in the Premier League.
Newcastle’s last point came in September 2012, when the club, then managed by Alan Pardew, drew 2-2 against Everton at Goodison Park.
United manager Benitez, however, is unconcerned about the record.
“The records are there to be broken, so we have to change that – that’s it,” said Benitez.
Newcastle last scored a Premier League goal in a Monday night game in 2013.
Asked about that statistic, Benitez said: “Solution? To score and to win. That’s it. We will try to do that, to score and to win.
“We will score in this one, and we will win, and that’s it. We will change the stats. The stats are there to be changed.”
Benitez is unconcerned about records.
Asked if he ever worried about losing runs, Benitez said: “No. I’ve told you – you change the manager, you change the players, you change the environment, you change the league, you change everything. The record is fine, but it doesn’t matter.
“You go there and how many of these players were playing the first game when they lost? How many of the Burnley players were playing?
“Were they playing on Monday at this time or was it different? Was the league the same or was it different?
“The numbers change every year, so it’s good for writing something, but it doesn’t change too much.”
Benitez isn’t a superstitious manager.
The 58-year-old said: “I was in Italy, and everything was like ‘don’t do this because we lost or we have to wear this because we won’, and in the end you don’t know what to do or wear!
“So you have to concentrate on your job and nothing else. These records, especially, I don’t care about at all, because since that record began, everything will have changed – new players every year, different managers, different moments. Everything is different.
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“In Italy in general, and Napoli especially, there were just a lot of superstitions about things.
“There was a circle that we were doing, holding hands in the dressing-room, because the chairman wanted to do it before the games. We did a circle and we won, so we carried on.”
Benitez was due to be a guest on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football show last month.
However, he pulled out, as Newcastle were propping up the Premier League at the time.
Asked if he would go on later this season, Benitez said: “We have to carry on, and after we can decide whether we go, but we will see.
“The main thing is to keep on winning. The pundit situation is quite different, because if you are a manager, especially if you are working, you have to respect the other managers and what they’re trying to do.
“Sometimes you can write about what we were doing, but you don’t know exactly why we were doing that.
“As a manager, you know how difficult that is, and when you go to the TV you have to be very careful about what you say, because maybe he has another idea or maybe what I said before – maybe we had a routine and a free-kick and the player put the ball in the top corner and you will say ‘great work during the week’, and you were doing nothing and it was just the player.
“So sometimes you assume it’s because of that and it’s not like that, and then as a manager you have to be careful like that.”
Meanwhile, Burnley are below Newcastle – who beat Bournemouth 2-1 before the international break – on goal difference.
Sean Dyche’s side finished seventh last season and qualified for the Europa League.
“Burnley are quite strong at home,” said Benitez.
“It will be a tough game, no matter how we are doing or they are.
“They will try to get three points against us, because we’re close in the table. The difference is not too big in the Premier League at the bottom of the table, you have to try to get three points.
“It will be totally different to Bournemouth. They look for possession, have pace, ability and are very dynamic. Burnley are physically stronger. It will be tough.
“The way they play at home, and have played against us, shows it will be tough. I think it will be very close and tough and difficult for us.”