There are now only 22 days to go until summer transfer deadline and yesterday enough was enough for Rafa Benitez.

The Newcastle boss speaking out about the lack of ambition at the club, how he needs to sell before he can buy anybody, whilst elsewhere the competition are investing in their squads to try and ensure no relegation worries.

Whilst the manager is clearly ever more frustrated with this fourth transfer window in a row where Mike Ashley if failing to keep his promises, Rafa Benitez still looks set to see out the final year of his Newcastle contract.

However, there was an interesting extra angle yesterday on his managerial role at NUFC, with a report that Newcastle offered Spain the chance to have their manager for the duration of the World Cup.

With Julen Lopetegui sacked after agreeing the Real Madrid job in secret, Spain needed someone to see them through the tournament in Russia.

Fernando Hierro eventually got the short-term role and has now been replaced by Luis Enrique on a permanent basis, though you could understand that Spain would surely have taken Rafa Benitez instead if possible. The Mirror say that the short time frame to appoint somebody prevented a deal being done in time to be loaned out.

The Mirror say that their information is that Mike Ashley was happy for this to happen because ‘it could benefit the club.’

No elaboration from the newspaper on how exactly this would have benefited Newcastle United but for me it is very bizarre thinking if true.

With Rafa Benitez in charge, you have to believe it would have been more than possible that Spain could have reached the semi-finals and so the Newcastle manager being involved with Spain until last weekend.

This would have taken him totally away from the preparations for pre-season and the training camp in Ireland, how on earth could that have benefited Newcastle United?

Also, Rafa concentrating on Spain, would have meant he wouldn’t have been able to be around to drive transfer business at Newcastle, though with yesterday’s revelations about the obstacles in his path, sadly his presence appears to make little difference to Mike Ashley and his minions.

There only appears to be two possible reasons for Mike Ashley to have wanted the Spain loan to happen.

Firstly, that Newcastle would clearly have received compensation from the Spanish FA for the loan of the manager.

Secondly, that if Rafa had been a success and was interested, and Spain wanted him to continue, that Ashley/Newcastle would have received the £5m/£6m contract clause compensation, which would have allowed the owner to dispense with such a demanding manager who won’t shut up, and bring in another Pardew/Carver/McClaren puppet.

The Mirror:

‘The 58-year-old Spaniard was offered the job of emergency coach of his national side when Julen Lopetegui was sacked on the eve of the World Cup, and Newcastle were happy to release him for five weeks, believing it could benefit the club.

But Spain ran out of time to get a deal done and handed the manager role instead to Fernando Hierro.

There are serious political tensions around the Spain squad, so Benitez had ­little interest in taking the job on a permanent basis — Luis Enrique has been appointed now — after the World Cup.’



  • MichaelMaximusMoose

    He should have gone and managed Spain at the World Cup,
    to say he stayed at Nufc to oversee transfers is a joke.

  • DeadToiler

    Not much of a story really, reporting on something that didn’t happen. I wouldn’t blame Rafa for leaving but I certainly don’t want him to. Be careful what you wish for. Better having a good manager and a bad owner than a bad manager and a bad owner.

    • David2211

      Is it? Or are both situations hopeless and pointless? As long as Ashley is here, nothing really matters an nothing will get better.

  • Big Hairy Man

    It’s in the mirror so it must be true.

    • Geordiegiants

      Jabbas so called media partner.

  • jack

    Ashley has rued the day he hired Rafa , and has wanted rid of him since , that’s what all these transfer windows are about. A way of making Rafa leave so he can appoint another yes man , then the club could turn around and day “well we offered another contract but he didn’t want to stay ” Ashley doesn’t usually employ anyone he can’t control , the proof is already there with kk

    • Wezza

      Quite right, that lie is already on the table ready to be used for PR should Rafa leave.

      • jack

        If everyone sacrificed one season I’m pretty sure he would leave. But as long as money keeps coming in he’ll stay .I’m gutted I no longer re new my ticket , but I still support them

  • Wezza

    I actually believe this story. It sounds exactly like something MA would do. Just when you think he can’t stoop any lower!

  • 1957

    It would have been interesting if he had taken over for the world cup, would he have tried to change the style of play to the one he favours and would he have been welcomed by the highly influential Ramos who was one of the most vocal critics of Benitez time in Madrid.

    I suspect Benitez looked at the situation and considered it was the wrong time to manage his home country

  • Paul Patterson

    In fairness, Ashley would offer his granny to the highest bidder . .

    • Peter C

      Couldn’t agree with you anymore. He is the mercenary of mercenaries.

  • Weyhhadaway

    Everything has a price at the Toon. The only positive thing I can say is that at least we aren’t in the same position as the Makems. That is as low as it gets.

  • Superdooperhooper

    Wouldn’t put it past the greedy fact hunt. If rafa had done well with Spain they’d have paid six million into ashley’s pocket and he could’ve installed another puppet

  • I’ve got the Ki

    Ferguson did it with Scotland in ‘86 when at Aberdeen. Has happened before, not the most bizarre story given the spot Spain found themselves in.