This is a new part of what we’ll be doing with TRUE FAITH from now on a daily basis to round-up the United related issues and put them in one place. This shouldn’t be interpreted as us saying we either agree or disagree with the pieces just summarising them. Occasionally, we’ll give our opinions alongside them.  This is the first so forgive us for capturing some stuff from last week. We’re also going to bring some non-United related football pieces for you which we think our beautiful and intelligent readership might find interesting. If you think there’s anything we’ve missed, please post the links in the comments boxes below – likewise anything for our Recommended Reading section as below too.

Eyes down for a full house:

Rafa after Fulham Away:

“I think it was a great game. At the end, like last season, we have played really well and we are pleased and really proud of this group of players and the fans were amazing as always. “This group of players, even in the bad times, they were not putting their heads down, they were always believing and working hard. We have to enjoy now and we have finished a difficult season. We did well today and we have a few days to enjoy it and we will see what happens. I’ve said before, I can see the potential but for now, I think it is time to enjoy and that’s it.”

Rafa on Ashley coming into the dressing room on full time:

“He said congratulations, talking with me and the team, nothing special,”

Rafa on talks with Ashley and Charnley: 

“We have a meeting coming soon, hopefully as soon as possible, and then we will see where we are. Someone will ask me the question, do I want to stay? It’s very easy. I can see the potential of this massive club and hopefully we can do things in a way that will be good for everyone to move forward, maybe together. At the moment, it’s just keep talking and see what happens next week.”

Luke Edwards in The Telegraph on the game and how dumb and venal Ashley can be – click here. 

More Benitez-Ashley talks crack in The Mailclick here

Rafa on his future at Newcastle United: 

‘I am going to the meeting in a positive way because we have the potential and we can do a lot of things better. If we do that we’ll have more chance to be closer to the top 10. Do I think we can change everything in one window and be in the top six? No. Can we get closer? Yes. We can head in the right direction. When we have the meeting then we will know if we are here (arms far apart), or here (closer together). Maybe we can finish it in one meeting, maybe two or more. Maybe we say, “We are here (far apart)… forget about that”. Or maybe we are here (closer), we can manage. Until you sit down and start talking, you will not know where you are.’

More stuff in here from Simon Bird, The Mirror quoting Rafa discussing United’s transfer policy and comparing it F1 – click here

Another piece from Luke Edwards, The Telegraph about what Rafa wants and what will keep him at United – click here

 

Some Newcastle United sources (I know, I know) have denied Rafa has been offered a load of wedge to stop at United for one more season according to The Chronicle. Click here for the story.

Scott Wilson, Northern Echo has a headline on his piece suggesting Benitez’s future will be sorted in the next ten days. Also some quotes from Rafa regarding Rondon’s future. You can click here to get at it.

Rafa cracking on about Liverpool’s win over Barcelona to get to the Champions League Final which you might have heard about this week: 

‘Come on, no chance. It is very clear. You have 45 minutes, 3-0 against AC Milan, the best team, miles away from anyone, the fans singing at half-time, the Milan fans so happy. Then you go and you score three goals in six minutes and Jerzy Dudek’s save, and then you go to extra time and then penalties… Better than that? Come on. The comeback, the atmosphere, the emotions… no chance, (the best) is Istanbul. This one (Barcelona), is it a great performance? A great game? Yes, fine, that is good. They’ve done really well with a great performance, but Istanbul is another thing.’ Referring to a TV Poll Rafa commented: ‘Who won the poll?’ he said. ‘It was very clear, only 33 per cent (said Barcelona).’

According to Simon Bird, The Mirror, United are looking to replace Ayoze Perez with Swansea’s 21-year-old winger Daniel James, who is also interesting Bournemouth. Perez has interest at Inter and Napoli though there are reports Arsenal have an interest as well. Click here to get at the report. Bit disappointing we’re ready to lose a player coming into his peak years for a Championship player. Ashley and Charnley moving the club back to being a stepping stone outfit again?

Rafa on Perez:

“Fight to keep him? Yeah, he is an important player for us. At the same time, the prices of players are so crazy it is not easy to say, ‘I will go and get this player or that player.’ It is the same for us. If someone comes, we’ll see where we are but I think Ayoze could be fine if we do the right things and he is happy because we  can  do the right things. I think at the end of the season you will see a lot of clubs linked with selling four or five players and wanting to buy four or five. This is normal, everyone is thinking about the future. What will happen with him? I do not see any problem now. Finish the season, see what happens and if someone comes for this player or that it is very normal when players are doing well. If someone comes deal with that.”

Not exactly helpfully our former nervous goalie Shaka Hislop, now working for ESPN is quoted in The Express as advising Ayoze to join Inter. Click here. Cheers Shaka.

Louise Taylor, The Guardian on the bother in the corporate areas of The Milburn for the Liverpool game. Obviously it wasn’t anyone’s fault at United that a good few hundred tickets were sold to Liverpool fans or that the security and stewarding was completely inadequate to deal with a problem that could quite easily have gotten out of hand. Why would that be the club’s responsibility? They only sell the tickets and are responsible for safety and security.  Click here for Louise’s article.

Ian Murtagh in The Star on Solomon Rondon being made Newcastle United Player of the Year – click here 

RECOMMENDED READING:

Barney Ronay of The Guardian has written some excellent pieces in the last week. These two are top notch:

Emiliano Sala: season’s saddest saga shines light on dark places – click here

European finalists deliver a very English great football moment forged overseas – click here

Something else from The Guardian – this superb piece by David Bolchover – Remembering the cream of Jewish football talent killed in the Holocaust – click here. 

TRUE FAITH – NEWCASTLE UNITED FANZINE