Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez has reportedly held ‘positive’ talks with the club since the end of the 2017/18 Premier League season that point to the Spaniard staying on at St James’ Park and continuing his good work on Tyneside.
There had been doubt over Benitez’s future, with rumoured interest from West Ham prior to their hiring of Manuel Pellegrini, and Ayoze Perez leading an impassioned plea for the boss to stay.
According to Chronicle Live, fans can breathe something of a sigh of relief as Benitez has informed the club that he has ‘no intention of walking away’ from the ongoing project.
After steering Newcastle to a top half finish in their first season back in the top flight, an achievement that earned him a Premier League Manager of the Season nomination, Benitez is said to be keen to ‘deliver more success’ after building a strong relationship with fans.
The 2005 Champions League winner is believed to have a £6m get out clause in his current contract, but the Chronicle explains he is committed to seeing out his terms, which run to 2019.
The next challenge for the Newcastle hierarchy will be to draw up a suitable extension proposal to keep Benitez beyond the end of next season. The progress of the longstanding attempted takeover bid could well impact how that and many other things play out.
The latest on the takeover is that potential buyer Amanda Staveley is considering her options after the price has apparently once more been raised by current owner Mike Ashley. While it was thought that a deal could be done for £320m, the price was first hiked to £350m and is now said to have been raised again to around £400m, potentially leading the takeover towards collapse.