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Rafa Benitez bleak update – The Times reveal heard nothing from Mike Ashley

3 years ago

The clock is ticking, only 25 days now until Rafa Benitez takes charge of his last Newcastle United match.

That is, unless he decides to sign a contract extension.

George Caulkin of The Times is usually seen as the go to man for what is happening with the club, the updates may be irregular but very much on the ball when he gives them.

On Wednesday morning, Caulkin has given an update.

The Times journalist explaining that he has stayed silent as he didn’t want to be drip feeding information/updates.

However, with the clock ticking, he feels the time has come.

George has revealed that Mike Ashley asked Rafa Benitez to provide his ‘contract wish list’, what it would take to persuade him to sign another deal.

However, despite the push for this coming from Ashley’s side, Rafa has heard absolutely nothing back some three weeks later.

This very much mirrors what Rafa Benitez has been saying/hinting at in press conferences and interviews.

The latest of those interviews being with Radio Marca yesterday on the occasion of Rafa’s 59th birthday…

“I am in contact with the club (Newcastle United) and I am waiting for answers to questions I have proposed (if I am) to continue.

“My family is in England and I am content here…but a series of conditions have to be met.

“To stay, (we) need to sit down, talk well about the economic possibilities of the club and what direction we’re going in.

“We have to mix experience and youth, that is the balance we have to achieve.

“English teams have a lot of economic potential and attract the best players.”

This should be an absolute open goal for Mike Ashley and at any other club Rafa Benitez would already have been given the assurances and signed a new deal a long time ago.

If this drags on with no conclusion for two or three more weeks, or even beyond the end of the season, then I think you would have to be very naive to think it would be anything short of inviting disaster.

Rafa Benitez needs to be given what he needs NOW and get started on preparing for the summer transfer window and next season.

George Caulkin has also confirmed that the release of the overdue Newcastle United accounts for last (2017/18) season is now imminent, with some invited journalists set to get an audience with Ashley’s stooge Lee Charnley to talk about them, once the club release the headline figures.

George Caulkin at The Times:

‘Rafa Benítez has had no response from Newcastle United three weeks after telling the club’s hierarchy what it will take to keep him at St James’ Park beyond the end of this season.

At Newcastle’s request, the manager submitted a wishlist in the week before their Premier League fixture at Arsenal on April 1, in the expectation that they would form the basis of contract negotiations. As of last night, he was still awaiting a reply, causing Benítez to seek clarification from the club; with only four games still to play, the clock is ticking.

Three weeks after submitting his contract wish list to Newcastle United (at their request), Rafa Benitez has heard nothing back.

Have avoided incremental updates like this as far as possible but the clock is ticking.

Hopefully there will be a positive response from the club; Lee Charnley is doing media briefings this week (not with me) on the club’s accounts and I’m sure he’ll be pushed on Rafa’s future.


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