Rafa Benitez keen to make changes at Newcastle

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Rafa Benitez says Newcastle United, as a club, MUST learn from its mistakes – and make sure the only way is up.

Benitez is looking to implement more changes at St James’s Park if the relegation-threatened club stays in the Premier League.

Newcastle are 13th in the division, and four points above the drop zone, with eight games left to play.

“We have to change things,” said Benitez. “I came here with the idea to compete and to create a strong team and a strong club, to compete every year.

“What we have to do if we stay up is improve. The way Newcastle were doing things before I arrived doesn’t mean they were right, because they were going down. Now we have had the chance to go up we cannot make the same mistakes again.

“When I said I wanted to stay, I could see the potential for this club to be in the top 10 or even higher, but it depends on consistency.

“You have to have a structure. Everybody has to be organised. Can we win trophies? We would need time, but you never know in the cups.

“To compete and be capable of winning something, you need to have the plan and the process. Everything has to be ... not settled down, that’s not the right phrase, but more clear.”

Benitez, used to challenging for trophies, says he has not “enjoyed” this season, though he is “proud” of the work being done at the club.

“Have I enjoyed being Newcastle manager? I enjoy it when we are winning,” said Benitez.

“I like to do things well ,and when you see something is right, I’m really proud. But it’s difficult to enjoy it when you are suffering all the time because you have to win and then you lose.

“Have I enjoyed this season? No, but maybe the word ‘enjoyment’ is different in English. I’m really pleased with my job. I like it.

“But enjoyment is when you score eight goals in the Champions League against Besiktas.”