Richard Keys launches extraordinary attack on Rafa Benitez – and questions Miguel Almiron deal

Richard Keys has launched a fresh attack on former Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez.

Tuesday, 19th November 2019, 9:03 pm

Keys, writing in his personal blog, says Steve Bruce has been “quietly working miracles” at the 11th-placed Premier League club since succeeding Benitez in the summer.

Benitez joined Chinese club Dalian Yifang when his contract at St James’s Park expired – after “doing his best to create havoc” for Bruce, according to Keys.

The Doha-based TV presenter said: “It’s gold for Steve Bruce – the man even Geordies wanted to fail. What a job he’s doing – proving that not only Benitez can manage that club.

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“Is it true? Does Bruce really have Newcastle seven points better off than at this time last season? Yes it is. And that despite a really tough start – a far more difficult start than Benitez had. The former coach says it’s not fair to compare different seasons – but he would wouldn’t he?

“Benitez left for a ‘long-term project’ in China and because (United owner) Mike Ashley didn’t ‘share his ambition’. What a joke. He left for a fat salary – and having done his best to create havoc for his successor.”

Keys also questions the £21million signing of Miguel Almiron, a player Bruce has lauded in recent weeks.

He said: “What exactly was Benitez thinking when he paid that money to Atlanta United? I can’t think of one – can you? He’s quick, but, other than that, what exactly does he do?

Miguel Almiron.
Miguel Almiron.

“Bruce will be a genius if he gets something out of him, but I really do wish both well.”

Rafa Benitez.