Nikos Dabizas has told The Chronicle that Newcastle United can win a cup competition under new manager Rafael Benitez.
Benitez was appointed the Newcastle boss earlier this month following the dismissal of Steve McClaren by the Premier League club.
The former Liverpool and Chelsea manager’s main priority at the moment is to make sure that the Magpies do not get relegated to the Championship at the end of the season.
If Newcastle stay up, then it is unlikely that they will be able to challenge for a top-four finish in the Premier League next season.
Former Newcastle defender Dabizas, who won the Euro 2004 finals with Greece, believes that the club’s long-term ambition should be to win a cup competition under Benitez.
“This is the most realistic target for silverware because it’s not a marathon, it’s a sprint,” Dabizas told The Chronicle. “I had this experience with Larissa – we won the (Greek) cup against the favourites Panathinaikos. It’s a realistic goal.”
Benitez is one of the best managers in Europe and has the experience of winning cup competitions.
The Spaniard has won the UEFA Cup, the FA Cup, the Champions League, the Europa League and the Coppa Italia in his managerial career.
If Newcastle stay up and are able to sign some good players in the summer transfer window, then Benitez could make them competitive enough to challenge for the League Cup and the FA Cup next season.