English Premiership

Benitez: Newcastle can avoid relegation

Jonjo Shelvey and Rafa Benitez (Getty Images)
Jonjo Shelvey and Rafa Benitez (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez believes they will stave off relegation once again this season, despite being 19th in the Premier League standings.

Benitez helped the Magpies perform above all expectations last season as they finished 10th in the top-flight following their promotion from the Championship, and the Spaniard is confident they can dodge relegation again.

Newcastle are still without a win after eight Premier League games this season. However, they have already faced five of the 'big six' sides, namely Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal, and Liverpool.

"If you just analyse the situation now, you are in the bottom three, but Crystal Palace, Bournemouth and Everton were in the bottom three after nine fixtures (last season) but none of them were relegated," said Benitez, according to the Northern Echo.

"Why? Because they were better and working harder and doing well and other teams were doing worse. For us, the main thing is to keep working hard and doing the right things even if you lose a game.

"We need to do the right things. But even if you are right, you can lose. The team is good, and the team will do well if we have confidence.

"The squad is a little bit better. Some people say it's not, but we didn't have Martin Dubravka, Kenedy. Who has to make the difference? Rondon, Muto, it's a little bit better."