Rafa Benitez has given no indication whatsoever that he has any intention at the moment of signing a contract extension at St James Park.

The manager waiting for the proper ambition to be shown by Mike Ashley in the transfer market, as well as other areas of the club, including the substandard training complex and Academy that are desperately in need of investment.

However, that doesn’t necessarily equal that Rafa is desperate to leave Newcastle at this moment in time.

Despite that, over in Spain the media have claimed that Rafa Benitez has become shackled to Newcastle United.

That it is only the £6m compensation clause in his contract that has prevented the NUFC boss being offered three other jobs recently.

Describing his situation as being like a ‘Golden Prison’, El Confidencial report that the President of the Spanish FA rang Benitez to talk about taking the Spain job. Only for the talks to go nowhere after the Spanish FA were made aware they would have to pay £6m to get his Newcastle release. Instead they eventually have gone for free agent Luis Enrique as the new permanent national boss.

On top of that vacancy, the report claims that two Premier League clubs were also stopped in their tracks by the insistence of Newcastle United that £6m would have to be paid for Rafa Benitez to leave his Newcastle contract that has a year left to run.

This is where it all gets very dubious.

El Confidencial claim that Arsenal wanted Rafa but the £6m buyout fee prevented them pursuing the Newcastle boss. When a club like them are paying £60m for a player, to suggest they would be scared off by having to pay a tenth of that to recruit a manager they really wanted, is surely rubbish. The report pointing out Unai Emery came with no buyout amount after having already left PSG.

West Ham are also supposedly a club who lost interest in Rafa Benitez due to the £6m which would be due, not quite at Arsenal’s level but have been buying players for up to £25m and once again it is difficult to imagine that buyout clause would have prevented any move by the Hammers.

The reality for me is that Rafa has put in a lot of work at St James Park and wants to build on that but can’t find a way to persuade Mike Ashley to change his ways.

However, he is enjoying the job in other ways with his attachment to the staff, players and fans, AND still sees the potential that is still there.

Just like not signing a contract extension, I don’t believe the Newcastle manager had any interest in leaving this summer either.

As things stand, in 12 months time no £6m buyout clause or indeed any NUFC contract will exist at all. What happens then is anybody’s guess.

  • TheFatController

    The problem is that, just like Ashley won’t sell the club unless he is seen as winning with a profit in skyrocket, Ashley won’t let it be seen that the current Mexican stand-off was won by Rafa.

    There needs to be some serious mediation between the two parties for a win-win outcome. I don’t hold out much hope of Ashley understanding that he has to make concessions to Rafa.

    It’s his club, his money. He’s used to getting people jumping to his tune (money) so giving and taking aren’t in his DNA.

    Hence even if Rafa signed a contact extension, I’d be expecting Ashley to ‘do a Keegan/Hughton’ on Rafa within a year…

    • Leazes.

      I think Rafa understood the Ashley game last year after pleading for signings….. Ashley wasn’t going to change anything despite securing the services on a 2 year deal….

      The Spanish press and the chronicle boys, well they are repeating the claim I’ve made for the last year and the article above suggests an author in complete denial of the situation at the club.

      Not only have we got a Chairman Charnley and owner Ashley Who don’t communicate we have the lead author of a fanzine who doesn’t communicate but sits listening to his own daft notions probably in conversation with his own nom de plumes, at least the chronicle came up with a tail end comment….

      ….’Benitez is committed to seeing out the final 12 months of his contract, but beyond that his future remains uncertain’.

      …even that isn’t exactly what I’d call a ‘commitment’ but as the headline writer put it a ‘Golden shackles’

      Dorado Manquillo

  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    What happens in 12 months, He`ll be out the door faster than Usain Bolt

    • Peter C

      Yes you are more than likely right, gone in 12 months.

      But I bet, if Benitez had an owner who was a bit brighter than Mike Ashley, he would stay for a considerable time at the club.

      Because he can see that the club, has the potential to be a lot more than it is now, not just a club that wants to maintain it’s Premier League status, and no more.

      Some of the most important ingredients are already in place, a fantastic stadium with regular sell out crowds of 50,000 plus, and an unrivaled fanatically and passionately loyal fan base, who almost too a man, treat him as a deity, not merely as just a moral man. Who wouldn’t have their head turned, by that sort of support and devotion.

      He is realistic to know that at the moment, it can’t compete at the top level, that is for a top 4 place, because it can’t realistically match the top sides in the money stakes.

      However he’s astute enough to know, with a bit of investment it could be competing regularly for a 8th to 5th spot and have a good shot of a decent cup run, which for a club like Newcastle, is success at this moment in time.

      He knows in a 5 to 10 year time period, of continued development and growth, it has the realistic potential to compete at the highest domestic level on a regular basis, in other words, to do a Tottenham.

    • Rich Lawson

      Big,fast lad,want’s to play pro’ football,baffled why we have not been linked to him yet ? Can he head a ball ?

  • SuperDesHamilton

    He is though, I love the bloke but I bet he can’t wait to get out this place!

    • mentalman

      There’s nothing stopping him

      • SuperDesHamilton

        Just the small thing of a £6 million release clause he must pay himself…other than that

        • mentalman

          He could do a keegan and walk away from his contract with his head held high and take the club to a tribunal

          • SuperDesHamilton

            He’s professional he doesn’t walk out on jobs like Keegan, when the going gets tough, Keegan gets going

          • mentalman

            So its his proffesionalism and not the clause thats stopping him. He’s not really trapped then

          • SuperDesHamilton

            No it’s that and a clause he’s a good un he doesn’t cry and walk out like Keegan.

          • SuperDesHamilton

            Your just being a D**k so you can make your own wrong opinion about him and his clause anyway

  • MadMag83

    I doubt he was ever in contention for the Spain job. Luis Enrique plays the way they want the national team to play, has recent success in Spain, and no doubt has the respect of those players. Rafa doesn’t play attacking tiki taka, and he probably doesn’t see eye to eye with Ramos

  • Weyhhadaway

    Rafa is an honorable man and also probably has a loyalty bonus coming his way.
    Arsely wants someone to give him the 6M buy out and not have to pay a loyalty bonus.

  • Leazes.


  • ghostrider

    It shows Ashley is horouring Rafa’s contract which Rafa took an age to finalise when he signed it.
    It means that what he was promised in that contract, he obviously got or he could simply walk away owing Ashley nothing and in fact take him to court for compensation.

    It’s only right that, if Ashley’s played a fair game with Rafa, then, if Rafa wants out to go to Spain or wherever, then he pays up- his contract…or he signs a new one offered by Ashley.

    We can’t be having managers dictating to football clubs. They are employees just like the players are…and handsomely paid, as well.

    However, it appears that Kenedy has signed because of Rafa. It also appears that certain players are staying pout because of Rafa.

    It could also mean that they know something that none of us know, except for what the media coax us into speculating on.

    So what’s the real truth?
    What’s the real fly on the wall bonafide reality?