When Rafa Benitez rocked up at St James Park two years ago, it was scarcely believable.

For Newcastle fans who had been subjected to Alan Pardew, John Carver and Steve McClaren for the pat five years, it took some getting used to.

After McClaren belatedly got the bullet with only 10 matches remaining, Rafa Benitez approached Newcastle to say he was interested in the job.

Even Mike Ashley wasn’t daft enough to turn that chance down.

The relegation situation proved too desperate for even Rafa to save despite three wins and three draws in an unbeaten final six game run but still Newcastle supporters couldn’t believe their luck.

It was a bit like the bloke dying of thirst in the desert and discovering an oasis where supermodels were serving free beer.

Mike Ashley has dragged Newcastle United so far down, with even many Newcastle fans doubting their own club’s modern day credibility.

So the classic Only Fools and Horses three-wheeler that proclaimed their business empire as:

New York – Paris – Peckham

Was made to look almost sensible now compared to Rafa Benitez’ career route:

Valencia – Liverpool – Inter Milan – Chelsea – Napoli – Real Madrid – Newcastle United

It was a major coup, and a lifesaver, for Newcastle when Rafa Benitez agreed to stay on after relegation.

Mike Ashley giving the Manager assurances to him being supported in the transfer market and Summer 2016 was a win/win all round.

Rafa allowed to spend around £50m on remodelling/rebuilding the squad, whilst at the same time generating a £40m profit in that transfer window.

On the pitch Rafa Bentez has done the job, bouncing straight back to the Premier League as Championship title winners.

Then he has followed that up making Newcastle competitive in the bottom half of the top tier table, despite having to work with what is basically his Championship team/squad.

However, off the pitch things have really fallen apart when it comes to the manager’s relationship with the owner, especially when it comes to trust issues.

All three transfer windows since Rafa’s first Newcastle one, have been a struggle and basically a disaster, in terms of properly strengthening the team/squad.

All three windows have seen the United Manager asking Mike Ashley to honour his promises to back him, then making clear his disappointment when that hasn’t happened.

January 2017 and January 2018 saw not a single player bought. Whilst Summer 2017 saw Rafa Benitez having to shop for £4m/£5m bargains with both Brighton and Huddersfield having net spends on transfers that at least three times higher than Newcastle’s.

Plus, in January 2018, both of these other promoted clubs bought players, unlike Newcastle, to try and make sure they avoid relegation.

We now have only nine matches to go and indeed Newcastle’s survival hopes could be pretty much decided in the next two matches. Consecutive home games against rival relegation candidates Southampton and Huddersfield…two wins and NUFC pretty much safe, anything less than four points and major worries with the remaining schedule of games.

Everything is up in the air at the minute with the relegation question to be answered, then we have the ownership question – takeover or not, plus of course Rafa Benitez’ future…

The accepted thinking appears to be that the only chance of a takeover happening is if Newcastle stay up, so if relegation is our fate, it would almost certainly mean being stuck with Ashley still, which then leads us on to the question of Rafa and what happens next.

Many/most neutrals were amazed when Rafa Benitez stayed on at Newcastle despite the drop into the Championship, the reasoning being what on earth is this double La Liga and Europa League & Champions League winning manager doing still there?

The former Real Madrid boss made clear how he loved the fans and saw great potential in Newcastle United as a long-term project.

However, I just can’t see how he could/would stop if we did go down.

The risk of damage to his reputation would be far too great as no sure thing that wed bounce straight back, plus of course the thought for Rafa of going through another transfer window with the owner playing such ridiculous games with him.

To have two relegations in three seasons, even though we know it would be Ashley to blame, would be bad enough – but if Newcastle then struggled to get back up it would be severely damaging to his future career choices and reputation.

If the drop happens this time, Rafa could walk away with his head held high and quite rightly point out how he has been badly let down by Ashley.

However, that moment would be lost and if he stayed after another relegation, walking out midway through the season or at the end of a failed promotion attempt, would leave him in a really poor position.

It means it is especially important that Newcastle put the relegation fears to bed as soon as possible, then get the club sold and gives Rafa Benitez to turn Newcastle United into something more than unfulfilled potential.

Never have the stakes been quite so high, although we’ve all said that more than once or twice as supporters of this quite mad club.

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  • Peaky Magpie

    He won’t stay if we stay up either….he’ll be off come May…

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      Enter stage left Pardiola & Geordie John
      😂😂😂
      It`s a funny old game

      • Jezza

        Sadly true. If and when Rafa goes it is a one horse race for Newcastle job.

  • Philippines

    A lot of words to say not much.

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    Aye it`s all down to the Fat Lad but Rafa could have walked in August & then again last month after more strokes were pulled by Fatso but he didn`t and i think he still thinks a takeover will happen in the summer, plus a 100 grand a weeks not to be sniffed at.
    it`s a real mess & will only be sorted if Ashley leaves but i wouldn`t be putting money on that.

    • Jezza

      Rafa isn’t here for the money. He could walk into any number of jobs at any time and get paid at least 100 grand a week.

      • MichaelMaximusMoose

        Maybe, but all the top jobs are taken and it would have to be a club mid table or move to the continent
        he had ambition for Nufc, Ashley hasn`t

        • Coach Clagnut

          You’re right, all the top jobs are taken…at the minute. It’s looking increasingly likely the Arsenal job will be up for grabs unless Wenger wins the UEFA. It’s been well documented that Conte is a dead man walking and Rafa still has a lot of goodwill at Chelsea despite his previous when at L.F.C.

      • Kneebotherm8

        That’s the going rate for a manager with his CV…….Ashley ain’t the type to pay over the odds for anything..

  • thewildchimp

    “It was a bit like the bloke dying of thirst in the desert and discovering an oasis where supermodels were serving free beer.”

    Not for me, though, because I’m allergic to alcohol. Yeah, I’m a bartender as well.
    Jokes aside, it was pretty much that feeling.

    Anyway, there’s not much left for speculation. Rafa has a “get out if relegated” clause in his contract and said he won’t sign a new deal if he isn’t backed properly. Will he wait to be disappointed by Ashley again? I don’t think so. The only things I think could make him stay are either we get a new owner, or Ashley splashes some cash immediately after the World Cup. I think mid July will be the deadline for Magic Mike, if Benitez hasn’t already packed his bags.

  • mactoon

    I think he still wants to be at the head of the rejuvenation of the club but it will never happen under Ashley, he just isn’t interested anymore. Regardless of which division we are in next season unless Ashley sells up and leaves it is only a matter of time before Rafa gives it all up.

  • Sid James

    This summer will be a right Carry On

    • Leazes.

      Lot of empty seats last night Sid, I’m thinking of buying it for a pound and turning it into an overflow car park for poundstretcher.

      • TheNutJob

        😂😂

  • Jack Chapman

    Please don’t go Rafa and get your brain into gear Ashley and get the club sold

  • TheNutJob

    I think he`ll go. Fatty won`t change

    • Jezza

      Rafa has had the rug pulled from under him in all four transfer windows since he came to this club and this summer won’t be any different. I think he’ll be gone whether or not go down and who can blame him.

      • ghostrider

        80 million and 50 million. I don’t think so.
        January transfer windows are exactly what they are, January panic windows and only good for loans…if you can get loans in that are not money grabbing crocks that is.

  • ghostrider

    If we stay up I hope he walks or is sacked.
    If we stay up and Rafa stays I’ll be absolutely gutted.
    I’d rather we went down to ensure he does go if that’s what it takes because I cannot take much more of this clowns football.

    • MichaelMaximusMoose

      😂😂
      Bit harsh

      • ghostrider

        Just a tad, maybe but I mean every word of it.

        • Coach Clagnut

          Which makes it all the more worrisome. You don’t have access to weapons do you? Proper weapons. Not the keyboard type.

      • Coach Clagnut

        It’s a bit mental mate. It’s a Bishop Bot who previously posted under AlanPardewsBlack&WhiteArmy ( like he had one!). Barking mad with the I.Q. of room temperature.
        Remember the defending and praising of Pardew in his final months? It was illogical at best but this blurt denied the evidence of its own eyes,probably because it’s never been to St James’ Park in its life.
        Well, it’s acting out it’s masters commands again and is now honing in on Rafa. Sheer force of numbers when posting and always the same agenda of anti-Rafa.
        It borders on the rabid and deranged.

    • Ram Kishore

      Please be gutted I would love to see that happen in the summer

      • ghostrider

        Do you seriously want more of what this clown is giving us as a manager?

        • Ram Kishore

          I would want to see how he sets up against comparable teams
          He’s done a decent job with the team against them.. attacking play just like u asked

          • MichaelMaximusMoose

            you`ve see it against the bottom 10 clubs

          • Ram Kishore

            Yeah he did better. So what’s your point?
            He’s made mistakes too.. he’s fallible too..

          • Soldier

            is he, you wouldn`t think so the way he acts

          • Coach Clagnut

            Not like the keyboard warriors on here who just know they know more than him when it comes to tactics and player selection.

          • theoriginalbomberman

            You know I don’t think you could have Rafa’s chorizo much further down your throat quite frankly. I have to ask did you think he was an amazing tactical genius who never made any mistakes at Liverpool? Or is he only a deity above critique because he’s now managing Newcastle?

          • Coach Clagnut

            Unlike you dipshyt, I can appreciate what a manager of the calibre of Rafa Benitez can offer the club I’ve supported for over 50 years.
            When your club is slowly dying, being garroted by a lying, gluttonous and indifferent owner, encouraged by trolls such as yourself, it’s heartening to witness someone of Benitez’s pedigree believing the club can be so much more that what is has become under Fatty.
            Not that you care. You’re a “socca” genius with all the answers. Remind me, how many teams have you managed to major honours?

          • ghostrider

            It’s not the first half of most games that I have the issue with. In fact it’s the first half of games that tells me we have a lot more in the attacking locker.

            It’s his second half mentality and no plan B that baffles me.
            He seems to do the opposite of what all fans can see and that doesn’t bode well with me.

            Letting him loose with decent money will never be enough for him or fans when he squanders it and has his buys try to buy into his negative mentality ,, overall.

            He is by no means a manager who like to attack and the use of the players is testament to that.
            It’s too much caution.
            As far as comparable teams, how many times have we set up at home (for instance) and sat back against comparable and (for me) teams that are below our capabilities?

            Then take a look at away games like Huddersfield where we defended a 1-0 lead to Huddersfield.

            Nonsensical stuff that he’d have to change dramatically and I just can’t see him doing it, because he’s a stubborn arrogant clown who’s living on his past.

          • Ram Kishore

            Yeah u r right about the Huddersfield match.. but what about the united one?

          • ghostrider

            Remember when I said in 90% of matches he’s negative in the second half. Man Utd was one game where he had a go even when getting attacked.
            that’s the difference.
            Use your pace against them and you nullify a lot of their attacks by doing so…obviously.
            It narrows down the potential of them getting back into it.
            We rode our luck but we deserved it by trying all game.

            I gave Benitez credit for it and I’d happily do it every time if he had the mindset to have a go like he has.

            There’s no need for him to do what he does…seriously.

        • East Durham Mag

          Only one clown and its you.

          • ghostrider

            So Rafa just acts like one but isn’t really one. That figures because he’s got no ability to make people happy.

          • East Durham Mag

            Who would you as an expert want installed as manager?

          • mactoon

            John Carver and Alan Pardew will be available soon…

          • Coach Clagnut

            Last time it was so active was in the dying days of Pardnocchio. Defended him fiercely. There’s a clue.

          • Coach Clagnut

            You act like a supporter but you’re not. You also appear completely self – unaware if you believe you have any capacity to bring a modicum of happiness to anyone with your birdbrained rants of exaggerated hyperbole.
            You’ve stopped taking your medication haven’t you!

          • ghostrider

            Aye.

          • Coach Clagnut

            He’s a Bot. Posts at the behest of the slimeball Bishop.
            It’s a well planned anti-Rafa agenda to deflect from the pernicious stewardship of Fatty.
            After all, we know his benevolence towards the team is legendary and he’s done nothing other than ” save ” the club from itself.

    • mactoon

      I’d like to see what he can do if he is given the players he wants in the summer

      • ghostrider

        Ok, be honest. How much do you think Rafa would want or how much do you think he needs to do something. Let’s say to finish top 10.

        What would be a fair spend, including money gained from transfers out?

        • mactoon

          I would add (in this order) two strikers, a creative central midfielder and a full back, possibly not all in the one transfer window. Any 3 of these would allow us to compete in the top half hopefully with Slimani, Kenedy and Dubravka joining us permanently.

          At todays prices you would probably be looking upwards of £60-70 million? I would subsidise this by getting rid of players like Haidara, Hayden, Perez, Mitro, and Joselu off the top of my head.

          • 1957

            No matter what he was given to spend he wouldn’t be happy, there will be some player he wanted he couldn’t get.

            It’s his way of working if he succeeds its because of him and despite not having the players he needed, if he fails it’s not his fault, it’s the club’s fault for not backing him.

          • mactoon

            I don’t have a problem if he’s getting players he wants in, then I can fairly judge him on his job at managing the squad he wanted.

          • ghostrider

            Slimani and Kenedy, seriously?
            Slimani is a half hearted waste of time and I can see why Leicester dropped him.
            Kenedy is a Mr sporadic. You’ll get something from him as and when he feels like it.
            I wouldn’t sign any of them on a permanent contract.
            Dubravka is a different kettle of fish and the jury’s out on him, but it’s looking good so far.

            But yeah, I think this club could offload and maybe hit the 70 to 80 million mark for new players.
            If Rafa’s here and he’s allowed to use that money i’d love to see what he buys and how he uses them, if I have to endure another season from him….which I hope to hell I don’t.

          • mactoon

            There’s always the risk of loan players relaxing when a deal is made permanent but from what I’ve seen I would take a punt on them as they are better than what we have and surplus to the mother clubs requirements so we may get a good deal on them. It depends on who Rafa wants but I would splash out $40 mill on two strikers and have Gayle and Slimani as back up. Problem is it’s all wishful thinking while Ashley is here and all we will be going for is loans.

          • ghostrider

            Well, I certainly would not trust Slimani or Kenedy on any permanent. Seriously.

          • Coach Clagnut

            English. The language we use is English. Learn it Bishop Bot.

          • ghostrider

            You appear to be fine reading it.

          • mactoon

            How about that Kenedy eh? hell of a player 😂

          • ghostrider

            Good pacey player. A good loan signing. I still stick by what I said.

          • HarryHype59

            Has Slimani actually kicked a ball for us yet?

          • mactoon

            Not in a competitive match but that’s what you get when the owner refuses to spend the club’s money on players the manager wants then scrabbles around for a last gasp loan deal resulting in a striker who is injured. He had a list of players on the 1st of January but waited until the last day to make a move. He was always going to limit any transfer activity to loan deals and getting an injured player shows just how bad an owner he is.

          • Coach Clagnut

            But you’re not a fan shytforbrains so it’s academic.

          • ghostrider

            Lol.

        • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

          A defensive midfielder, 4 defenders, 2 defensive wingers and an out and out defensive striker ;-) . Perhaps a defensive no.10 but we have one of those.

          • ghostrider

            Hahahaha. The thing is it’ll probably happen.

          • Lakeland Mag

            For once you’re right. Ashley has no interest in making Newcastle competitive on the field of play so would never spend the money necessary to make it happen.

          • Coach Clagnut

            Stop encouraging the loon. The only thing it might get right is putting the correct shoe on the appropriate foot without assistance.

          • nufcslf

            Are you using two monitors to have a conversation with yourself?……

          • ghostrider

            No, there’s just me. You’re too paranoid and your last comment is sickening.

          • Coach Clagnut

            Diddums. The truth upsetting you again?

        • Blackburn1066

          It’s not about how much, it’s about a plan to bring players that can do a job for the team. It may take another 5 seasons to get the team that Raffa would love to see play at SJP, but that’s what other clubs do. Man U, Liverpool , Spurs all had bad spells till they got the players in that could do the job. It takes time and a lot of Dosh! Raffa has not been given the chance to do this because of the little fat man and his corner shop ways, and the fact he has not got the Cash.

          • Coach Clagnut

            Fatty has the cash alright he just chooses to spend it elsewhere.

          • nufcslf

            That’s so much closer to the truth.

          • ghostrider

            That might have been true a while ago but it’s not true today because the TV money and the shenanigans of those at the top has scuppered all that.

            Are you telling me that Chelsea progress each season?
            Man Utd?
            Liverpool?

            Arsenal?
            Most just stagnate or dip.
            The rest of the league is just a whack -a – mole job witn nobody really making any long term headway other than to fester for a bit in a position a few higher than a relegation spot for a few seasons.

            All this building from the back nonsense is exactly that.
            Any good manager will get a balanced team is short order. It might not be a title winning team or a champions league flirting team but a balanced team that can hold its own in a league by playing balanced football.

            If I paid Rafa that type of money to produce the dross he does with the players he has I’d drench the git.
            The pace in our team and the coaching that could be done to hone their forward play…and yet this git sets them up as cannon fodder.

    • Oldgeordie

      If that is how you really feel why don’t you go and support those clowns down the road?

      • Kneebotherm8

        He already does mate….

      • ghostrider

        2 reasons.
        1. I’m a Newcastle United supporter and fan for over 45 years.
        2. Nobody but me decides who I support.
        Pretty simple isn’t it.

        • Oldgeordie

          I have been a supporter for 71 years and like many others have criticised some of the managers but we don’t go on about it to a point where it is boring. You have said your piece on nunerous occasions so give it a rest.

          • East Durham Mag

            Love it

          • Coach Clagnut

            It’s a troll on a mission for Fatty and his attack poodle Bishop.
            The idea is to post as much anti-Rafa bile in short order to try and influence the modern day spectator that all the ills befallen the club for the last 10 years have nothing to do with Fatty.
            Back in the day, it was posting under a different I.D. championing the cause of Pardnocchio.
            He/she/it has never set foot inside St James’ Park and never will.

        • Coach Clagnut

          No you’re not. You are a Bishop Bot Troll and I claim my 5 pounds. I’ll take it in flesh if you like.

          • ghostrider

            I’m smiling.

          • Coach Clagnut

            It’s what simpletons do.

      • Geordiegiants

        He does!

    • Lakeland Mag

      If we stay up and he stays then hopefully you’ll sulk off in a huff and we won’t have to read your anti-Rafa bile anymore. As it is you’ll probably get your way as the only way Rafa will stay is if Ashley sells up or spends enough to make the club competitive on the field of play, and as most of us know the former is unlikely and the latter will never happen.

      • ghostrider

        You know what this is?
        This is a case of ” I told you so, nah nah.”
        You see, you want Ashley out and Rafa to stay.
        I want Rafa out and Ashley to stay, only if we cannot get in an owner who has long term genuine plans to betterment of the club.

        Now here’s the problem.
        If Rafa signs a 20 year contract I’ll still be a Newcastle United fan.
        If Rafa puts 10 men behind the ball against every team in the league for his entire contract, I’ll still be a Newcastle United fan.

        I’ll absolutely detest it all but my life has been Newcastle United football CLUB, not a Rafa or an Ashley or anyone else for that matter.
        If this club ended up in the non-league lowest tier and was still Newcastle United football club…I’ll be a fan and supporter, whether it’s Ashley, Rafa or little Billy Bubbins the local lottery winner owning it with a manager called Toby Tusselberger from Dusseldorf who’s never played football in his life but stayed at Billy Bubbins’ house one time when he was a college student and formed a bond that carried on to that day in the world of fantasy.

        So you see, I don’t want to see Newcastle United fail. I want the best of what it can give but I’d rather have a long time of dancing in and out of the leagues than not dancing at all because fans decided the hatred of Ashley and wanting him out, was far more important than who we got in to replace him, even if it caused the club to crash bang wallop…what a picture, what a photograph.

        I’d hate to say ” I told you so.”
        Why?
        Because it does me no favours…because it’s my team and ultimately… my mindset on my team and my potential happiness and excitement or sheer dejection does not revolve around people like yourself on a forum. It does revolve around us all at games in a collective feel good or dejected factor during a game and walking out after.

        And then it affects all people all around the nation and the world who are also Newcastle United fans/supporters, individually.

        So it’s like this.
        I want Rafa out because I don’t think he’s up to the job. I don’t think this due to reading papers or looking at message-boards….I see what his set up is by watching it all.
        I don’t buy into the romance of him. I don’t hold a messiah flag or wear a Rafa we love you badge. And I certainly don’t take notice of paid up members of the after football club life of ex players doing their duties as media darlings that basically follow the flow in whatever direction it’s sent out.
        If I believe something appears more correct, I’ll agree but I won’t agree just because a so called expert(s) reel off a thought.

        Any manager that made excuses at this club was rounded on if they weren’t doing the job.
        Newcastle United fans as a rule, do not suffer fools.
        Newcastle United fans as a rule do not want to suffer negative football.
        And yet here we all are arguing over a manager that shouldn’t even be here at this time. He should have gone in January to give a new down to Earth normal footballing manager the chance to actually do something.

        Now we have to wait and hope that Rafa decides to have a go.

        Now here’s the key.
        If this git has a go as we know he can, till the end of the season and gets us out of the mire, then he should be held accountable for deliberately trying to mess it all up earlier.

        Personally I think he’ll relegate us because the man is some kind of egotist, stubborn clown who is riding along on the Ashley hate bandwagon…because believe me, if he wasn’t, he’d be getting it and would have probably walked by now like a little sulking git.

        • Coach Clagnut

          Still off the medication I see.
          ” I want Rafa out and Ashley to stay”. That should tell you all you need to know about this troll folks. It also is convinced Pardnocchio is a good manager/bloke. I shyt thee not.

    • nufcslf

      You f**king would you tit. I also hoped fatty’s helicopter crashes with him and his whole family in it, but know the world is too kind to sh*t like him to make sure proper toon fans have to suffer the pryk.

      • ghostrider

        Something should be done about you with that comment.

        • Coach Clagnut

          What do you propose birdbrain?

        • nufcslf

          Nothing needs doing to me. I simply hate, big heads, liars, cheats and bullies and Cashley is all 4. He has ruined a once proud football club and isn’t done yet. The man needs to sell and go away. I can’t understand anyone defending the [email protected]

          • ghostrider

            on’t come out with that nonsense about hating liars and BULLIES after saying what you did about Ashley and his family.
            Let me just put something into perspective for you.
            Mike Ashley is a rich man and he owns Newcastle United football club, who happen to still be in the premier league after 11 years of his tenure, regardless of whether the club has been relegated twice.

            He’s made mistakes and told porkies just like 99% of the entire population does to get by in life, no matter what.

            You hate Mike Ashley because you want more than he’s willing to give and because of that you want him and his family dead.
            What a sick person.
            Let’s hope that karma doesn’t come back onto you, eh?

          • nufcslf

            Always happy to rattle a Cashley rse licking cage. Enjoy the match on the weekend.

  • Natturner26

    Would we want a manager who took us down twice in two seasons?

    • mactoon

      He didn’t come until March so it would be harsh to blame him for the first relegation especially given that he finished with a 6 match unbeaten run. The damage had already been done. Although I can criticise some of his selections this season I put the lions share of the blame for our predicament squarely at the lack of investment in players Rafa wanted.

      • Geordiegiants

        You can’t believe some of these comments can you?

        • Coach Clagnut

          Troll central on here anymore. Bishop has the word out and all his shaft lickers are toeing the line.
          Fatty is innocent of everything that’s affected the quality of the team and anything that he’s likely to inflict on it if he hangs around.
          You’ll notice, with the rare exception, they never offer an opinion on who they’d choose to replace Rafa.
          Propaganda tactic as old as the hills.

      • Natturner26

        To be fair he got 10 points in 9 games before being relegated. The last win didn’t count. I agree it would be harsh to blame him for the first relegation. But I do think a great manager would’ve kept us up that season and would keep us up this season.

        • Coach Clagnut

          You agree it would be harsh to blame him yet you still do. A great manager would have kept us up you say. Who?

    • HarryHype59

      Good question. I don’t think he will walk into a top job when he leaves us. In truth his record here is middling at best. The “Rafa walks on water” brigade on here, won’t accept he has made numerous mistakes in terms of team selection, tactics and player recruitment.

      He is a huge upgrade on Pardew or Sshteve, but isn’t the infallible demi god, too many on here make him out to be.

      • Geordiegiants

        Name another manger that, would seriously even consider coming to Newcastle, and of done what Rafa has done and made the club millions?

        • Natturner26

          I want Lucien Favre or Slavisa Jokanovic.

          • Coach Clagnut

            OK. Tell them there’s no money to spend, the reserves are useless and there’s no kids coming through that would make a difference. Tell them the club has been shoestringed for the last 10 years by a serial liar. Tell them they will have their best players sold from underneath them and to suck it up.
            Let’s see who is keen to manage that shytshow if they have any integrity and/or ambition.
            Incidentally, I want a Lear jet & an ocean going yacht but it’s never going to happen.

          • Geordiegiants

            Exactly!

          • Geordiegiants

            I want a lottery win and world peace!

        • HarryHype59

          Dyche ,Houghton or Jokanovic!

          • Geordiegiants

            That would seriously come?

          • HarryHype59

            If you offered them half of the six million pounds Rafa is reputedly earning, they probably would.

          • Geordiegiants

            Jokanovic would be the only possibility. Even that would be doubtful as he is going to be a progressive manger, and that is the last thing that would happen if he came here.

    • Lakeland Mag

      That old chestnut yet again. Rafa didn’t take us down, he wasn’t given the time needed to keep us up. There’s a difference. If McClaren had been sacked a few games earlier we wouldn’t have been relegated that season.

    • Coach Clagnut

      Quit with the hoary old he took us down once. If you’re not bright enough to have seen what had gone on before he arrived then its best you stay schtum then people wont think you’re a complete hatstand.
      Of course if you’re one of Bishops’ bumboys that explains a lot.

  • Mrkgw

    In actual fact, this ongoing sequence of uncertainty will have undoubtedly have taken a toll on the club as a whole, players primarily. From Mike Ashley through to Rafa, we need a settled and constructive environment in which positivity can be built. If Rafa intended to walk then he should have done that before now. Here we are at a pivotal point in the season and it all sways back to Rafa. It’s draining.

    • Coach Clagnut

      No it doesn’t sway back to Rafa. The Bishop Bots infecting this website are trying to change the narrative away from Fatty and onto Rafa.
      They post with a frequency and a venom wholly out of proportion and with no reference to Fatty’s lying and pillaging of the club to line his own pockets.
      It’s the old bait and switch and Bishop thinks there’s enough gullible weapons on this site to make it worth his while.

      • Mrkgw

        I think that you can be safe in the knowledge that the overarching dislike of Mike Ashley is intact, even amongst those criticising Rafa at the moment. Of the latter, I choose to question his tactics and shambolic release of Mitrovic to Fulham. But I can only emphasie the fact that Ashley is the architect of all things really bad at the club.

        • Coach Clagnut

          Ask the bile spewing keyboard warriors who they’d have as a manager to replace Benitez. 95% of those spitting venom will sidestep the question. They’re uninterested in rational thought. Trolls with agendas.

  • Soldier

    i think we`ll start next season with a new manager or should i say coach as Cashley will still be here & Rafa won`t

    • Coach Clagnut

      Odin help us and any other mythical godhead you want to substitute.

  • robbersdog

    Rafa will leave if Ashley doesn’t sell the club, irrespective of which division we’re in.

    But hey, when Ashley goes for the cheap/available option, eg, Pardew, maybe the Rafa bashers on this forum will realise what we’ve lost.

    • mactoon

      agree with all that. If only Ashley would invest some of the TV money we will get at the end of the season in the summer transfer window we would be able to compete, and with a manager like Rafa and a good squad who knows what we could achieve

    • Coach Clagnut

      Of course they wont. They’re shytforbrains who don’t support the club in anywhichway you care to mention. They’re here to change the narrative and sanitise Fatty’s pernicious ownership.
      If it’s perceived to be someone else’s fault instead of the actual culprit the true fans know it to be, then he might stand a chance of attracting some paying customers next season.

      • theoriginalbomberman

        I fail to see how disliking Benitez somehow means you don’t support the club he’s an egomaniac who puts himself before the club he’s lied about a few things to deflect criticism, he isolates players for no good reason. Look at the rift he’s causing between the supporters it’s toxic at times. Quite frankly I want both Fatty’s gone at the end of the season new ambitious owners and a manager who knows how to play exciting attacking football.

  • StevieB

    Not very often I agree with every word said . But I agree with this post . He will walk away if we are relegated.I still truly believe he is still in contact with PCP with behind the scenes conversation going something like , “well he’s forced our hands till May now, so it’s up to you Rafa to make sure we have something to come back for in May”.
    I really believe the takeover is still on. The January window proved it . Even if he didn’t want to spend his own money , he’d have borrowed against the club to guarantee safety if he knew he was still gonna be stuck with us come August.
    But he didn’t do that ……why ?? Because it would be more money to try and recoup come takeover time in May .
    So instead he rolled the dice on Rafa keeping us up on a shoestring with his tactical nouse whilst not heaping more debt/cost on the asking price in May.

    • Down Under Mag

      I hope you are right – I personally doubt if Ashley ever had any intention of selling and it was either a PR exercise or just another tactic to avoid spending.

  • kingfisher

    Spot on StevieB. my thoughts exactly. However the reality is that even if the takeover happens and Rafa stays,we will never be able to compete with Man City, Manure, Chelski, Arsenal, Spurs and,Liverpool.
    So we can forget about winning the League and any Cup that these teams compete in, but it would be nice for a change to be able to win a few games and get the enjoyment back and aim to finish mid table and not have these terrible relegation fights every year !

    • Coach Clagnut

      We can compete. We cannot afford the Neymars etc but with a decent outlay and a first class manager like, oh I don’t know, say, Rafa Benitez, we’ll give anyone a good game.

      • kingfisher

        I think that even if the takeover happens Coach, no consortium/group will be able or want to invest the capital needed immediately to enable us to really give it a go in the Prem.
        Apparently Pcp want to change the whole infrastructure throughout the club which is a good idea, as opposed to throwing zillions into the playing side of things like the big lads,but obviously this means it could be a few years until we are able to forget the threat of relegation,and even then if things don’t change with the big lads to make it more of an even playing field, then we will always be a mid table team scrapping for titbits which the top teams are not interested in.

        The way to go which has been talked about in the past,is perhaps for the top 6 to form a so called “super league” with other top european teams,and leave us mere mortals to compete with each other fairly,because as I say, we are so far behind now that we can never dream of winning anything in the near future except if we get relegated again, then maybe we could compete for the Championship title and if we are successful, the whole sorry cycle starts again !

  • mactoon

    StevieB’s post does make sense and if Ashley was going to get profit from the sale I doubt he would mind Rafa and Staveley colluding behind the scenes. If the ale happens and new investors come in, who knows what ambition they will have for the club.