Mike Ashley is going to offer Rafa Benitez a transfer budget of ‘up to £80m’ to convince him to stay this summer, according to reports on Saturday night.

Less than 24 hours before the final game of the season, The Mirror claim that Mike Ashley would be encouraging his manager to break the club’s transfer record, set 13 years ago when around £16m was paid for Michael Owen.

The report makes reference to this week’s publication of the 2018 Sunday Times Rich List, which once again listed Mike Ashley as the north east’s richest person.

In that latest rich list, it is estimated that the NUFC owner has seen his fortune rise by £277m to £2.437bn.

The Mirror claiming that Mike Ashley is still insisting ‘he can’t match the foreign-owned clubs such as Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea in the transfer market.’

All a bit strange as nobody, including Rafa Benitez or any Newcastle fan, is thinking that NUFC should be trying to match the spending of top six clubs, certainly at this point.

Nor indeed do you ever hear of anybody expecting Mike Ashley to be investing that paper increase in his wealth into Newcastle United.

Newcastle fans just wanting the club’s owner to treat his manager with respect and give him realistic backing, both in terms of autonomy and the level of budget available.

Earlier today, The Mail’s man in the north east, Craig Hope, reported that his information was that Rafa was expecting somewhere around £50m to spend [plus money from players sold] in order to strengthen his squad – but that more importantly, he wanted complete freedom in how he spent the money. With Mike Ashley having blocked previous incoming transfers despite the Spaniard supposed to have had complete control.

That Mail report also reporting that Rafa was needing assurances as well that the Academy and training ground would have the investment that is desperately needed, before he committed to a new extended contract.

This coming week or so must surely see some movement and if Mike Ashley doesn’t move towards what Rafa wants/needs, then we will all be wondering [and worrying] how this summer is going to play out.

  • Albert Stubbins

    Aye, sure he is!!

  • Paul Patterson

    The proof will come from the pudding ..

    • paul mclaughlan

      Maybe Ashley has cut out his puddings. That’s where the 80 million is coming from.

      • Paul Patterson

        I was suggesting that he was in fact the pudding 😂

    • Leicester Mag

      The FB has already eaten that!! 🍰🍰

  • Leicester Mag

    Here we go again carrot dangled/ carrot withdrawn/ carrot never trucking existed. Mirror now little short of a lie rag.

  • Andy Mac

    Fat pig flying ?

  • Guest 2

    So, a few days ago, reports suggest Rafa said the transfer ceiling needed to be broken. Now the Mirror (preferred media partner) reports Ashley is saying it!

    What a load of pony. Why hasn’t he, first and foremost, agreed a new contract for Rafa then? It’s just more of the Bishop led nonsense aimed to cover up what will be the complete opposite of this story.

  • Andy Mac

    I believe Kim Jong-un more than I’d trust Fatman

    • Guest 2

      LOL, aye, Mike Wrong-un makes a suitable western cousin.

      “Benitez will be handed up to £80m…” likely means it will stop at 20!

      • Toonrobbybobson

        Aye the button he presses is the relegation trap door… hes pressed it twice already from his southern cave office

  • Alreet

    Never gonna happen. Sell up ash and leave. 11 years of pap on the tyne from you, you cretinous slug.

  • Peter Sagar

    Even if Benitez did get “80 million, what would that be compared to what other clubs, with similar attendances to Newcastle, spend?

    • Paul Patterson

      I’d take £80m now as an out and out spend .

  • East Durham Mag

    The three old biggest lies…. “the cheques in the post” ” the car will be ready tomorrow” and “i won’t c*m in your mouth pet” have now been joined by “i’ll let you spend in the summer this time Rafa”
    Liar liar pants on fire Fatty.

    • Coach Clagnut

      and…honestly, a dee luv ya!

    • Paul Patterson

      Oooh, charming, lol.. 😮

    • nufcslf

      Very good.

  • ToonBarmy

    Surely this story is rubbish, for the simple fact that neither Ashley or Rafa would bandy about any figure?
    Rafa will either be happy or not, that’ll be the only way we will know until it comes down to actually spending money – or not.

    • nufcslf


  • Tweed Mag

    I gave up on the Mirror a while ago as source of reliable information.

    • Leicester Mag

      Disgrace to the name of what was once a paper of courage and integrity

    • Paul Patterson

      Perhaps Ashley should look in one..

  • Billmag

    Has the sports journalist’s at the Mirror got no integrity at all, time and time again they are being fed lies upon lies by Ashley’s stooges.

  • Toonrobbybobson

    Dont forget that will include wages and agent fees… so that will mean 3 loans.

    • gold coast mag

      and does it include any proceeds from sales? There might be another 20million + if Mitro and other unwanted players are sold and not loaned out again

      • Toonrobbybobson

        That will magically disappear…

  • Clarko

    “All a bit strange as nobody, including Rafa Benitez or any Newcastle fan, is thinking that NUFC should be trying to match the spending of top six clubs, certainly at this point.”

    Not true.

  • GToon

    What is that “m” after the 80 quid Rafa has to spend? Is it a typo?

    • Kneebotherm8

      It’s 80 million pennies,not pounds…………Ashley did say he’d get every last penny..

  • Leazes.

    …..’The Mirror claiming that Mike Ashley is still insisting ‘he can’t match the foreign owned clubs such as Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea in the transfer market.’…

    He hasn’t matched anyone….. he hasn’t put a penny into United….not a penny!

    • gold coast mag

      Hopefully we can go close to matching the big clubs like Bournemouth and Brighton. How much will Wolves splash about to try and stay up- more than us under the current regime.

    • Steven05

      I expect Brighton, Huddersfield, Wolves, Cardiff and the playoffs winner to spend more

  • ghostrider

    Only time will tell but rumours will always persist until then.

  • Return of the Mack

    ‘Up to’ 80m inclusive of wages over 5 year contracts. He will never invest.

  • Rob

    Don’t believe you anymore mike. Remember that time you did an interview claiming you’d learned from mistakes and wanted a trophy. It must be years ago now and nothing changes.

  • TheTradge

    I’ll believe that when I see it, anything that comes out of Ashley needs to be taken with a HUGE pinch of salt!

  • mactoon

    That mirror article is utter garbage
    No amount has been agreed as discussions are ongoing and the quote from ashley about matching the big clubs is from his last interview with sky. Add to that it is rafa who is saying we need to break our transfer record not ashley

  • Desree

    We all know that a budget upto 80m is anything from 0 to 80m so if rafa gets 10m to spend Ashley has been true to his word.

    If he said it was no less than 40m I may feel differently

  • nufcslf

    Cashley having a chuckle at the sheep that might think he has finally seen the light and must get that season ticket renewed, is he. [email protected] Never going to happen.

    • Clarko


      • glassjawsh-got-banned

        we went down… so whats your point?

        • FatParosite

          Just block the Bishop drone.

        • Lhc

          Point is that he spent money that season weather we went down has no relevance. Fatparosite just blocks ppl who doesn’t agree with him he’s like a big baby.

    • Lhc


  • JohnnyNUFC

    I don’t believe it, feels like a lie

  • Coach Clagnut

    of course he will sweetheart,of course he will

  • Weyhhadaway

    Eee wey have ya seen the price of eggs? This much, that much, this player that player and we still know nothing.

    The closest thing to fact we do have is that Ashley is still here for this window at least and more than likely the duration. Everything else is just journo,s filling pages with click bait inviting us all to slag off our esteemed leader. Lazy.

  • Toonrobbybobson

    *subject to terms and conditions – that can change without notice and will include wages, agent fees, bonuses, petrol money, food bill, gym membership, daily car parking fee at training ground, changing room locker hire, shower access, health insurance, lucozade, shirt for season, sports direct tea mug…

  • FatParosite

    Anyone who is aware of the ‘up to’ speeds of internet service providers will see through this rouse. So called fans still buy season tickets well aware of Ashley’s truth economy. As I’ve said many many times before, the idiots that go are the problem.

    • Geordiegiants

      You only have to look at Arsenal to see what happens when fans don’t turn up, things happen, Jabba couldn’t sustain it without the fans.

      • Shipcote Willy

        Spot on, there were protests for years but empty stadium focussed their minds. Nowt worse for Ashley’s ‘brand’ than rows of empty seats and a few banners.

    • Lhc

      Here man I might be deed before Ashley leaves so why am I and thousands of other (loyal) who love the club going to change our ways of life which for me has been from being a bairn. You don’t get these years back so yee crack on wi your poxy little whatever it is, protest. But thousands of other who aren’t idiots will still enjoy going home n away week in week out.

  • 80M gets us two top 6 players and 1-2 bargain deals. We are obviously signing 1-2 players on loan too so should cover the target. Even 20-40m of that can be recouped by player sales. Ashley can surely fork 50M will that TV money in the bag for another year.
    Make it happen Mike, people may start believing in you yet if you show a little support for the fans and manager’s ambition!
    HWTL! Let’s get a result against Chelsea to finish on a high note!

    • FatParosite

      I will never EVER believe a word Ashley says.

  • Geordiegiants

    We don’t need to wonder how it’s going to play out, Jabba is not going to spend money. So it’s up to Rafa if he is going to stay and struggle, or go to a big club with ambition like West Ham.

  • Leazes.

    You a Daily Mail reader then Graham?

  • Awaymag

    That 80mil will include agents fees, signing fees, player bonuses, wages so that would get us two / three players we need to give the squad a boost. Also depends on shifting players out first no doubt Colback, Mitro, Toney, Sels, Saivet and Arrons will have to go before anyone comes in

    • Leazes.

      …and of course our rivals will not strengthen at all will they?

    • Dont stop bobbi fleckman

      I think Toney will be given another season, seems to be doing well and Aarons may get another season. The others will need to go but their wages may mean only Mitro brings in money.

  • Mxpx

    The keyword being upto with the true figure likely to sit at 10-15m of we have a net spend of 80m we should be looking at europa league as a bare minimum… Won’t happen though

  • Taz

    80 mill … my ar$$e..lol be lucky to see 8

    • Jezza

      Spot on. Dubravka at £4 million will be our biggest signing of the summer.

  • Shipcote Willy

    Ashley using the Mirror instead of his annual Sky interview for his propaganda. No chance of £80m. It will be all smoke, mirrors and creative accounting of transfer funds. I doubt whether Rafa will swallow this guff this time and I suspect Ashley’s minions will be preparing to leak stories about Rafa’s unrealistic expectations,can’t compete with City etc, in due course. Expecting Ashley to invest £80m is to ignore history. As KK said you can’t trust anything Ashley says

  • panther

    Is he including wages, cost of house, car etc. in this 80mill?