As the timely International break nears its end, Newcastle United are about to embark on a monumental month in the club’s future, resuming Championship duties as Wigan arrive at St.James’ Park this Saturday.
With 8 games to go, promotion is in our hands, sitting top of the Championship and most importantly, 7 points ahead of automatic promotion chasers, Huddersfield Town.
While us fans don’t need reminding of the importance of an immediate return to the top flight, it must be said that the stakes have never been higher for our beloved football club – we are entering a month that could define the future of Newcastle United. Here’s how:
The stakes have never been higher – it’s win or bust
With Rafa Benitez at the helm and the feel good factor back at the club, promotion could mean the start of a bright future. Benitez has made us proud to support our club again, but his long term vision can only be fulfilled with Newcastle United in the Premier League.
Not only has the Spaniard’s know-how boosted the teams results on the pitch, seeing our away form improve considerably since his arrival, Benitez gives Newcastle considerably greater pulling power in the transfer market off the pitch. This could provide a huge boost to Newcastle’s recruitment this summer, with it being widely accepted that considerable quality must be added to the squad in order for The Magpies to compete in the Premier League.
If promoted, building Newcastle to be an established Premier League side will be Rafa’s biggest challenge yet, but with tougher opponents, a squad to be developed and a city full of hope, Benitez would relish the challenge at a club which remains full of potential.
So, that’s the plan, but fail to get promoted and things will almost certainly end very differently – highlighting the importance of the weeks to come.
Many Newcastle fans, including myself, would be resigned to losing Benitez, should we remain a Championship club next season. Losing the promotion race would be a disaster, with the thought of another year in the Championship hard to take for many Newcastle fans, but it is losing Benitez, however, that is our biggest fear of all. As previously highlighted, the future could be bright should Benitez lead Newcastle United into the Premier League and beyond, but a future without him could be equally as dim should Newcastle fail to gain promotion.
Ideally, we don’t get ahead of ourselves and concentrate on the here and now, but when the stakes are so high, it is easy to see why the nerves are kicking in amongst the Geordie faithful.
Newcastle have an action packed April, playing 7 games in all, over a period that could not only decide promotion, but define the future of our beloved football club.
(Fancy having your say? Send any articles/ideas over to us at NUFCblogsubmissions@gmail.com & we’ll get back to you!)
About Olly Hawkins
Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.