Rafa Benitez shot to the top of Tyneside Popularity chart with this explanation of the club’s transfer activity this summer, according to The Shields Gazette.
The Spaniard has responded to the insinuation from the dearly departed Moussa Sissoko that the Magpies aren’t a big club. Benitez laid it on the line, damning those who asked to leave with his words:
“We are only interested in bringing players to Newcastle who want to work hard for the club and the team; not players who want to be at another club maybe next year or the year after.
“We are not a stepping stone, we are Newcastle United.
“Every player should be honoured to wear the shirt of this club. They should feel the same passion that the fans feel, then you have a great relationship between the players and the supporters in the stadium”
It’s a fair assessment of the situation. We need players willing to fight for promotion and take the rewards that brings.
Footballers are shallow, they are rarely supporters of the team they play for but they have to match our passion with commitment.
If, as Rafa, says, they just want a payday and can’t be bothered if we win or lose, we don’t want them. If they don’t want to be here, get shot of them.
The club and manager did well this summer to shift on those who didn’t fit into their plans and at a profit. We can’t argue if that money is used at a later date to invest in the squad to ensure Premier League survival if we win promotion. That’s the target this season and we’ve got a good chance of achieving it with the signings made this summer.