Andy Gray offers his opinion on Benitez, explains why Newcastle aren’t a big club

Rafa Benitez

Newcastle United are in danger of getting relegated from the Premier League.

Former Aston Villa and Everton striker Andy Gray has suggested to Sport360.com that Rafael Benitez is not the right manger for Newcastle United.

Benitez was appointed the Newcastle manager on Friday following the dismissal of Steve McClaren.

The Spaniard has been entrusted with the task of keeping the Magpies up in the Premier League, but Gray does not think that the former Liverpool and Chelsea manager will be able to do that.

“Is there enough time for Benitez to come in, give them a short, sharp shock and keep them in the Premier League?” Gray told Sport360.com. “Is he the right man? I cannot say yes, for sure, to either of those questions.

“I have only ever known Benitez in charge of a big club, whether it be Liverpool, Chelsea, Napoli, Inter Milan or Real Madrid, all teams with massive resources.

“He didn’t do much at Inter, did okay at Napoli and wasn’t great at Real, so I am not sure he is the right fit.”

Benitez has managed some of the biggest clubs in the world and has worked with some great players.

The former Real Madrid coach will find things distinctly different at Newcastle, who are second from bottom in the Premier League table at the moment.

The Magpies are fighting for survival in the top flight of English football, and the current situation at St. James’ Park is not something that Benitez is used to.

Gray has also claimed that Newcastle are not a big club and has given his reasons why he thinks so.

“Newcastle are not a big club – apart from the fact they get 52,000 crowds every week,” said the former Rangers striker. “They haven’t won anything for many years; they don’t contest major tournaments, and the last time they threatened to be a big club was when Kevin Keegan was in charge.”

One suspects that Newcastle fans will not be pleased with Gray’s comments…

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