By Will Butcher
Kieron Dyer has compared current Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez to Toon legend Sir Bobby Robson, as two of Dyer’s former sides do battle.
The Toon are set to play host to Ipswich Town on Saturday, with Benitez looking to consolidate his side’s lead at the top of the Championship with three points.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, former midfielder Dyer revealed Spaniard Benitez is the first manager at Newcastle that can match the achievements of Robson.
“When the team and supporters are united, the momentum is unstoppable,” Dyer told the Telegraph. “I still keep a close eye on events there and I’m very excited about how things are going under Rafa Benítez.
“For me, he is the first manager since Robson who can really achieve something big at the club. I think they’ll be back in the Premier League next season and I think they’ll go on to surprise a lot of people when they get there.”
Dyer played under Robson for five years during his eight-year spell on Tyneside, after moving to St. James’ Park from Ipswich for a fee of around £6million.
The 33-time England international was an integral part of Robson’s side that reached the heights of the Premier League top four and Champions League trips to the likes of Juventus, Dynamo Kiev and Feyenoord.
Robson, who passed away in 2009 aged 76, managed a total of 255 games in his tenure as Newcastle boss, winning 119 of those.
Newcastle can go four points clear with a win against Ipswich, if Norwich slip up against Preston.
In other Newcastle news, Benitez has revealed the injury status of this new signing ahead of Saturday’s match.