Rafa Benitez says he’d rather stay at home than accept what Mike Ashley is offering
One thing you can say about Rafa Benitez and Mike Ashley, is that they are both very consistent.
The Newcastle manager has repeatedly said ever since he arrived at St James Park, that Newcastle United are a club with massive potential and that with the right plan in place, they can build year on year and if everything falls into place can be successful.
Whilst the NUFC owner has repeatedly made clear that doing as little as possible to survive year by year in the top tier, is his idea of success.
With only three weeks to go until he is scheduled to take charge of the final game of his current Newcastle United contract, Rafa Benitez has stated: ‘What I want is a job where I can enjoy competing. If I cannot…maybe I have to stay at home and wait (for another job to come along).
As he spelled out back in 2016 and has repeated numerous times since, often after the latest transfer window closed…’When I decided to stay here in the Championship, it was to compete to go back to the Premier League and try to be in the top ten, and after, try to go to Europe.’
The NUFC manager has also stated repeatedly in recent days, in interviews home and abroad and in press conferences, he gave Mike Ashley a list of what needs to be agreed to before he commits to a new contract, only to still get no reply some 3+ weeks later.
A reply as such did come on Thursday, the Newcastle United 2017/18 accounts finally made public and the message both in the accounts presentation and from the organ grinder’s monkey (Lee Charnley), that it is business as usual.
No ambitious investment in the infrastructure (St James Park, Academy, or the new state of the art training complex that was announced six years ago and said to be essential if Newcastle United were going to be able to compete) and certainly no commitment to a more expansive transfer strategy.
For a manager to be messed about as much as Rafa Benitez has been and undermined at every turn by Mike Ashley, to be told then that it is going to be business as usual, it will only surely end in one way. Especially when there would be no shortage of ambitious clubs desperate to sign him up.
I have a feeling Rafa Benitez won’t have sit at home too long, before he signs a new contract…elsewhere.
“What I want is a job where I can enjoy competing.
“If I cannot…maybe I have to stay at home and wait (for another one), I don’t know.
“But at the moment, my idea is to have a team that can compete.
“When I decided to stay here in the Championship, it was to compete to go back to the Premier League and try to be in the top ten, and after, try to go to Europe.
“That was my idea in the first year, so OK, we cannot now, but we will try.
“Now, we are in a situation where we have to decide if we want to achieve something more.
“I have been here for more than three years and I was clear (about wanting to compete) from day one. I also think it is what the fans are looking for.
“We need a team that can compete in the Premier League and not just survive in the Premier League.
“I think there are ways we can do that but we have to make sure we are of the same opinion. That is it.
“I am not saying anything special or strange.
“It is just a case of saying, ‘What is our idea? This one. Can we go together? Fine. Perfect.’
“But it has to be something that makes sure I, the fans, everybody here, are sure we can compete.
“It is not a case of thinking, ‘Maybe we can finish 10th or maybe we can finish 17th’.
“It has to be a team so that when you play against anyone, you are sure you can (potentially) win, not (thinking) a draw will be a great result.
“I was talking to a friend, and I said I would like to do 11 more years, 11 more years as a manager, Roy Hodgson is in his seventies and you can see that he is still there.
“I like to manage teams and I like to coach players, so I’m happy with that. I always say that we are forward thinking. My staff, they are young people and we are always thinking about how to improve things.
“But because I have come from the Real Madrid academy, we have a winning mentality. We want to win.
“For me, to draw games…I like to win and I want to compete for trophies.
“The best trophy is the Champions League, so in the next 11 years, I would like to have the possibility to win the Champions League.”
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