Rafa Benitez tells NUFC fans what to expect from Slimani & Dubravka following deadline day moves

After both of their loan signings were officially announced late last night, Rafa Benitez has had his say on the arrivals of Leicester striker Islam Slimani and Sparta Prague stopper Martin Dubravka – telling NUFC fans what both will bring to his team.

Starting with Sliamni, the signing of the Algerian hitman who cost Leicester £29m will be a big boost for Benitez. His arrival comes far later into the window than he would have liked, but he’s been credited with an interest in him all month and he’s finally got his man.

Here’s what Rafa’s had to say after signing Slimani:

“Slimani is a player with experience in the Premier league, and obviously we were looking for that.

“He is a player who can fight with defenders, challenge and score goals. Hopefully he can give us some experience and some different characteristics to the strikers that we have at the moment.”

An interesting way of putting it from Rafa, who expects the 6ft 3′ striker to ‘fight defenders’ and ‘score goals’ during his spell on Tyneside. Sounds like an interesting upgrade on Mitrovic to me! In all seriousness though,  he’ll soon become a hero at the club if he fires us to safety – and I’m quietly confident he’ll be a hit.

Rafa then spoke about Dubravka, the 29-year-old Slovakian international who arrived on loan from Sparta Prague.



Here’s what the Spaniard told NUFC fans about his new goalkeeper:

“Dúbravka is a Slovakian international goalkeeper, and he is someone with some experience. He will need to settle down quickly as he is a player coming from abroad, but he is very agile and he can play with his feet.

“He will give us some competition in goal, and that is what we are looking for.”

Good to see Benitez state that he’s good with his feet, with one of the biggest flaws in Darlow and Elliot’s game being their real limitations when it comes to distribution.

Let us know your thoughts folks – are you happy with these two buys?

(Fancy writing for us? Send any articles/ideas over to us at [email protected] & we’ll get back to you!)

About Olly Hawkins

Born in Gateshead, Olly was a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

5 thoughts on “Rafa Benitez tells NUFC fans what to expect from Slimani & Dubravka following deadline day moves

  1. Ian:
    Slimani has 8 goals in 35 apps for Leicester.Thats 1 goal in 4 games.

    The majority of those were coming on as a sub. When he starts he has a very good goals to games ratio.

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  2. Impressed with the signing of Slimani 🙂 – some real talent, that should thrive on the many chances NUFC create. Unsure about Dubravka 😕 – he isn’t a Reina, but Darlow and Elliot sure aren’t either – good outcome for Woodman to go out on loan now, though 😉 .
    Can’t help but comment on the under-performance of the management, to leave everything to the last minute 😳 – cost as two very valuable points (Burnley) 😡 !!!

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  3. Peter:
    Impressed with the signing of Slimani🙂– some real talent, that should thrive on the many chances NUFC create. Unsure about Dubravka😕– he isn’t a Reina, but Darlow and Elliot sure aren’t either – good outcome for Woodman to go out on loannow, though 😉 .
    Can’t help but comment on the under-performance of the management, to leave everything to the last minute 😳– cost as two very valuable points (Burnley) 😡 !!!

    Most of the business of the entire window was done yesterday by all clubs. Look at the big names who moved to/from Dortmund, Chelsea, Arsenal, Man U. If Leicester were prepared to loan Slimani earlier in the window, then I’m sure it would have been done. Like us with Mitro and others, they waited to see whether anyone would buy Slimani, only when it was clear this wouldn’t happen did they agree the loan.

    The gratifying thing is that the club were geared up to successfully conclude all of their business yesterday. Something that hasn’t happened in the past. The only hiccup was with Mitro and this wasn’t anything to do with NUFC. Yet it shows the domino effect, that Anderlecht couldn’t complete the signing because of another player with another club.

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