After relegation inflicted partially by local rivals Sunderland two years ago, the future of Newcastle United looked uncertain.

Recently appointed Rafa Benitez looked as if he may depart and an exodus of players was going to follow him out of St James Park.

A year later and an instant return to the Premier League was secured through automatic promotion as winners of the Championship.

Newcastle United were back, with a swagger and a togetherness not seen since the 2010/11 season with messrs Nolan, Barton, Smith, Harper and the like.

Now fast forward to May 2018 and thanks to the heroic efforts of Benitez, the players and us the supporters – who have been superb in our support home and away, Newcastle’s return to the Premier League resulted in Premier League football assured for season 2018/19, with still a handful of games remaining.

This is thanks in large part to Benitez, who has succeeded despite the restrictions of Mike Ashley and the transfer market. Dubravka and Kenedy were brought in only on loan and were pivotal in our resurgence from February onwards, the marvellous 1-0 win over Manchester United setting us on our way and the 2-1 win over Arsenal making NUFC mathematically safe a month ago.

As we approach the end of the season, we finish against Chelsea, then it is essential we keep Rafa.

Reports linking him with Napoli, Arsenal, West Ham and Leicester have surfaced recently and nobody can rest easy, until the manager is given assurances of what transfer budget he has to play with and full control of how he wants to use it.

It is a significant summer for the future of Newcastle United.

The foundations have been built and we are back where we belong, a comfortable safe season, despite our very recent form after relegation fears became history. However, if we are to progress next season, funds need to be available to Rafa.

It is imperative that at least two strikers with top tier goalscoring ability need to be brought in, after the struggles of Gayle and Joselu this season.

Another left-back, right-back and left midfielder need to be brought in to strengthen the squad, and with a more limited time in which to recruit players, we must act fast.

The decision lies with you Mr Ashley.

We either see the rise of Newcastle United, or see a future I dare not contemplate if we lose Rafa.

Any alternative manager of your choosing will not be able to match his quality, integrity and ability, only mutiny and disunity will ensue.

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  • Paul Patterson

    Only an idiot would shatter the momentum we (and mainly Rafa) have built up. Over to the owner . .

    • panther

      and thats exactly what we have

  • Leazes.

    ‘Jackaman’…. not a local name…. its from Suffolk.

    Quote on Pardew…..’Get it right and fans will begin to show faith in him again. Have a poor start with little investment and the critics will be out again….It’s going to be a long summer’.

    You are saying exactly the same thing as you did about Alan Pardew…. rallying to the regime…. another chance and another…..don’t worry Jam tomorrow’.

    Its going to be a long summer alright…. another nom-de-plume, and another conservative political diatribe with absolutely no understanding of the events or lack of them at this club….. now which of the ‘authors’ on the Mag is it who ‘ hates the endless off the field politics’?

    You are too obvious Graham….. how many of these names did you invent without a thought of the demographics, its really odd that surnames from supposed writers aren’t Border names or Celtic….very odd, or maybe not….thats the art of the Journalist!

  • TheFatController

    What is bizarre is the need by Ashley to oversee everything, not give Rafa full say on players within whatever budget he is given. I get you may want to have a say on wages and agent fees, but not player identification and final say.

    His worth is around £2.4bn. He’s looking to sell. He doesn’t turn up to games. So all that really matters is the club doesn’t get relegated.

    Now, if you had stumbled across a great manager who just happened to want a job in England when you had one, and put right a lot of the problems you faced (mainly, secure in the PL with players and fans happy), if you didn’t care wouldn’t it actually be that you’d say ‘you can have every penny generated on keeping us on the PL gravy train. The better you do, across player development and performance. The more you make…’

    Ashley has a business he wants to sell. It’s prime assets in a buyer’s eyes are the fans onside, momentum, success and a manager they would want. Any smart businessman would therefore keep his ‘alchemist’ manager onside.even if you hated him personally. You’re worth £2.4bn, why care about personalities? Get drunk, gamble, live life, leave Rafa to it – you’re only here once.

    Not Ashley. ‘Let’s play personalities’. What a bizarre man.

  • Leicester Mag

    Yet another in a stream of articles stating Ashley must do this or this needs to happen. History shows it won’t happen and next year we’ll have it again or more likely the return to a Muppet like Pep McNugget or the Silver Shhthead.

  • Viru leckworth

    I can’t help worrying that Ashley doesn’t understand – or indeed care – about the quality of manager we have. I worry he looks toward a Dyche who has gained a favourable position for Burnley. It worries me that he doesn’t give a toss if Benitez does leave. However if he allowed that to happen, he should be careful because how many decent managers would want to work for a regime that favours minimum investment?