As reported by the Chronicle Rafa Benitez has been discussing the changes that he made for Newcastle’s game against Blackburn, saying: “I think for some games we maybe made seven changes but it’s not that you make too much,”
The Spaniard said: “Some of them we had to do it, some of them last week were coming back from international duty and didn’t play so they were fresh and could play.
“So I don’t think it has been negative in terms of the way that we are playing.
“But we will see. We will have fresh legs for the next one but maybe some of them will play again anyway.
“Obviously if you change players then people will say: ‘Oh, you are just thinking about the cup.’
“No, I was thinking about winning against Blackburn and then to approach the other one with the same mentality.
“We had been changing players; for this game we were doing the same.
“We didn’t show the character and quality we normally show though. We have to learn and quickly change things and be ready for the next game.
“It is an opportunity to get into the next round.”
Clearly Benitez is confident, a view shared by many Newcastle fans ahead of todays game.