Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez has admitted that facing former club Liverpool always leaves him feeling “emotional”.
In 2005, Benitez famously won the Champions League with the Merseyside giants and the Spaniard has maintained an affinity with the club’s supporters since his departure in 2010.
On Sunday afternoon, Newcastle welcome Liverpool to St James’ Park, and Benitez has acknowledged that he always regards facing the Reds as a “special” game.
The 57-year-old told reporters: “It’s a special game for me. It will be emotional. At the same time, we will try our best and will try to win.
“My family still lives (on Merseyside) and there are a lot of connections. I have to focus on Newcastle United. The fans and the cities have a lot of similarities. The accent is hard – both the Scouse and Geordie accents. I’m very bad at both.”
Newcastle can move above Liverpool in the Premier League table if they can emerge victorious in the North-East.