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Rafa Benitez was overseeing preseason training sessions involving Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Toni Kroos this time last year, preparing Real Madrid for a shot at the Champions League and an annual La Liga title fight with Barcelona.Things are very different for the Spanish coach 12 months on.Benitez finds himself in the second tier of English soccer, one day away from starting his bid to guide Newcastle back into the Premier League. He is perhaps the most high-profile manager to coach in the League Championship, with trips ahead to the likes of Huddersfield, Rotherham and Barnsley.Benitez didnt have to be in this position. After failing to keep Newcastle in the top flight in a 10-game stint as manager at the end of last season, he could have exercised a break clause in his contract and looked for another job. He surely would have found one, given his impressive resume that includes Champions League (Liverpool), Europa League (Chelsea) and Spanish league (Valencia) titles as well as spells with six leading European clubs.Yet, Benitez liked the passion of Newcastles fans. He was impressed by the size of the club with its 52,000-seater St. James Park stadium that dominates the northern city, and content with the control and financial backing he was promised from the board. So he agreed to a new three-year deal in May in a huge, surprise coup for Newcastle.And after an offseason of squad reshuffling and seemingly astute purchases, Newcastle starts the season against Fulham on Friday as the odds-on favorite with British bookmakers for promotion.After the last two months of last season, I knew the team, knew the players. And I knew we had to change something to create a positive atmosphere, Benitez said Thursday. We know its very difficult, the Championship, and every game will be complicated but now we have the hope we can do well, the belief we can do well. That is the main thing at the beginning.Among the eight players brought in by Benitez are midfielders Mo Diame and Matt Ritchie, striker Dwight Gayle and defender Ciaran Clark. They have a mixture of Premier League know-how and experience of playing in -- and getting out of -- the grueling League Championship.In terms of the mentality of the team, it has changed a lot, said Benitez.Benitez isnt the only Champions League-winning manager coaching at this level this season. Roberto Di Matteo, who won European club soccers biggest prize with Chelsea in 2012, was hired by Aston Villa in the offseason and takes over a side playing out of the top division for the first time since 1988.Villa was the European champion in 1982. Nottingham Forest, the European Cup winner in 1979 and 80, is also in the Championship. Blackburn and Leeds, English champions in the 1990s, are in the division, too.There are big names throughout the second tier but Newcastle will be the team to beat.Newcastle, everybody knows, is a Premier League team -- a big name, a massive club, said Diame, who dropped down a division from Hull to sign for Newcastle. Well be back in the Premier League, Im sure. Foyesade Oluokun Womens Jersey . -- Mike Smith never saw his first NHL goal go in. Deadrin Senat Womens Jersey . - After leading the Saints to a fourth playoff appearance in five seasons, Drew Brees expressed confidence in the direction of his team and, perhaps more importantly, showed a willingness to listen to contract proposals if the team needs his help getting under the NFLs salary cap. http://www.cheapfalconsjerseys.net/ . Now, correct me if Im wrong but I saw one official distinctly pointing at the net indicating a good goal but after an inconclusive review they overturned the goal. Shouldnt the ruling on the ice (good goal) stand after an inconclusive review? Why was this overturned? James Veaudry Pembroke, ON -- Hey Kerry, Youll get a lot of these, but why was the Montreal goal against Nashville Saturday night overturned? Eller puts the puck on net and the on ice ruling from the ref behind the net is a Montreal goal. Black Friday Falcons Jerseys . -- Stanfords Kevin Danser knelt on one knee and hardly moved on the sideline as Michigan State celebrated its Rose Bowl victory and his Cardinal teammates made their way to the locker room. Authentic Falcons Jerseys . Barcelonas entertaining victory ensured the defending Spanish champions retained their share of the league lead with Atletico Madrid two rounds ahead of their meeting in the capital. Real Madrid needed a late goal by substitute Jese Rodriguez to earn a 3-2 victory at Valencia to stay in third place and three points behind its title rivals. HOUSTON -- Taijuan Walker left a start early for the third time this season because of the same foot problem on Tuesday against the Houston Astros, which left the Seattle Mariners searching for how to eliminate the issue.Walker (4-7) yielded five hits and five runs before leaving after four innings with discomfort in his right foot. He also left early because of his foot on June 14 and June 19.Taijuan obviously still isnt quite right, manager Scott Servais said. He struggled, and hes trying to pitch through it, but we probably have to re-evaluate where we are at here. We will have it looked at again.Walker is frustrated that this issue has lingered for so long.I feel like I just haveent had my best stuff, he said.dddddddddddd. My [velocity is] down. My changeup isnt as sharp. Nothing is really as sharp just because I cant get into my legs and get after it. Its probably not best for me to go out there and pitch because I cant give it 100 percent.The Mariners lost to the Astros 5-2.First two innings was good. I was able to drive, Walker said. After the second inning, I had no legs. Everything was up. Everything was running back to the plate. I just couldnt drive it in there.Information from The Associated Press was used in this report. Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys China Jerseys Wholesale Cheap NFL Autographed Jerseys Wholesale Authentic Jerseys Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys 2019 ' ' '