Proud Rafa Hails His Boys

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Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez, who led Liverpool to Champions League glory in 2005, was serenaded throughout by Magpies fans desperate for him to sign a contract extension.

He was proud of his team, if disappointed with some of their defending, and pointed to the performance as an indication of what could be achieved with the right support from owner Mike Ashley.

Benitez said: "You know that we have had conversations and we will have conversations in the next couple of weeks and see where we are.

"It's so simple: you have the potential, you can see the potential, you can feel the passion of the fans and what it means for them, this club, so we have to try to compete with the teams that are around and at the moment, it is not easy.

"I am really proud and pleased because we have stayed up, but I would like to compete for something more. Hopefully we can go closer and we can match the am