Rafa Benitez reveals how strong an Newcastle United XI he will play against Nottingham Forest in the League Cup

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Newcastle United boss Rafa Benitez admits he will shuffle his pack for the visit of Nottingham Forest in the League Cup.

Mark Warburton's men, led by four-goal former United frontman Daryl Murphy, head to St James's Park tomorrow riding the crest of a wave having taken three wins from their opening four Championship games.

In stark contrast Benitez's men are yet to score in the Premier League having suffered 2-0 and 1-0 losses to Tottenham Hotspur and Huddersfield Town respectively.

And with the Premier League visit of West Ham United on Saturday, Benitez says he will use his squad to the full extent, in order to keep United fighting on two fronts.

"We will see new players come in because we have to use the squad," said the manager.

"We have the same problem we had for the last game, nothing new. Players are getting better, but it is too early for them. I cannot used the injured players so that is the main reason why I have to use the squad. Maybe there will be one player from the academy, the under-23s. Maybe some of the players will be in the market so people can see they are fine.

"Winning games would make everything more positive. The majority of the players were working with us last year and know how we work. It is more difficult in the Premier League but it is still the same methodology that has been working for years.

"If we win, it will be fantastic, very positive and everyone will have the same feeling. We have to approach the cup competitions with ambition, trying to do our best with the squad we have at the moment.

"Confidence grows when you win. The two performances of this team showed they were working very hard and were very well organised. You have to take your chances in the Premier League and not make mistakes. We made mistakes in both games and were punished."

Of tomorrow's opponents, who lie fourth in the second tier standings having beaten promotion favourites Middlesbrough 2-1 last weekend, Benitez added: "I think they will try to play the kind of football they like to play. They will pass the ball and be well organised. Maybe they will change some players like us, but it has to be like this."