Reports Newcastle Want Rafa Benitez As Head Coach

There are reports coming out of Italy that Newcastle want to bring in former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez, to be the new head coach at Newcastle United.

Rafa Benitez -turista-a-Napoli

Rafa Benitez – former Liverpool manager

The reports suggest that Mike Ashley is keen on bringing Rafa to Tyneside, but unless there is a commitment from the owner to try to become a top four club in England, we just cannot see the ambitious Benitez wanting to join a club with only limited ambitions.

Rafa is also doing well at Napoli and he has the Italian side 3rd top of Serie A  at the moment, but his contract at the club runs out this summer, so no compensation would need to be paid – so that will interest Mike Ashley.

We also remember that Rafa wanted to spend lots of money while he was at Liverpool, and that kind of money will not be available at Newcastle, so we we’d be very surprised if these reports have much truth in them – but we’ve been wrong before. 😀

However, given that we could end up with Steve McClaren or John Carver as the new head coach – we’d take Rafa any day – and of course he won the Champions League in 2005 with Liverpool, and he’s had an excellent career in football management.

The 54 year-old has managed nine clubs since taking over the Real Madrid Reserve side in 1993, and they have included Valencia, Liverpool, Inter-Milan and Napoli and he also managed Chelsea from November 2012 though the rest of that season.

While at Liverpool for six seasons from June, 2004, Rafa had a record of 350 games managed, with 196 wins, 75 draws and only 79 defeats for a win average of 56%.

And since taking over Napoli in May, 2013, he has managed 86 games with 49 wins, 21 draws and only 16 defeats, for a win average of 57%.

We cannot see Rafa being interested in the Newcastle job much at all, unless he has more say in who comes into the club and who leaves the club in the transfer market.

But as we said, we’d certainly be happy enough if Rafa Benitez does come to Newcastle in the summer, and he’s been third favourite at 5/1 on Sky Bet for several weeks now.

Rafa would be a better choice than either one of the top two favorites – Steve McClaren (6/4) or John Carver (3/1) – but Mike Ashley would also find it difficult to control the Spaniard, if Mike kept selling our best players, or doesn’t bring good players into the club.

What do you think?

Comments welcome.

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62 comments so far

  • jesperfuglsang - capt'n awesome of the lemon crew

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:00 PM

    Comment #1

    We all know we have our Head Coach!

  • Rotonda heights

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:00 PM

    Comment #2


    Very naive I know but at some point wouldn’t ashley be legally forced to pay off his loan and / or spend x amount on the club.

    Or can he really just keep pocketing it all and employing mediocre people as long as we finish 17th or above every season.

  • Our Toon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:06 PM

    Comment #3

    What on earth. No we dont want Rafa, rafa doesn’t want to join us and we have no handed of getting Rafa

  • toon kk

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:26 PM

    Comment #4

    Personally I think we’ve got our coach in Carver for the foreseeable future.
    There will always be a strict tight regime at Newcastle as long as Mash owns the club no matter how rich the club becomes.
    Unfortunately we’ll have to get used to supporting a meaningless club.

  • Rotonda heights

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:34 PM

    Comment #5

    toon kk

    Meaningless is the word. I’ll watch tonight as pray god we can put one over the smug ——, but generally the club is dying on it’s feet, although ironically, probably never more financially fitter.

  • 9

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:39 PM

    Comment #6

    I think it’s safe to say you can remove the “probably” from your last sentence!

  • sweendog

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:52 PM

    Comment #7

    Rafa would be excellent. Its well known he wants to return to England, at least he has some tactical wit.

  • Our Toon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:56 PM

    Comment #8

    Rafa wants to return to England but he’s not desperate to return!!

  • p

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:56 PM

    Comment #9

    Seems a plausible story in that Mash would like Rafa. Mash strikes me as a guy who is more comfortable with people he knows for the coach role. Everyone is familiar with Rafa, much more so that the likes of Tuchel and so on.

    I agree; though if Rafa is told what the deal with playing staff is from the outset and can get his head around it, I do think he would like more of an ambitious club in terms of player budget. But, at the end of the day, money talks.

    Still, if Mash can pay him a load of money (he probably can especially if there is a PL survival clause in there) and give him a long contract, he might fancy it.

  • lesh

    Feb 11, 2015 at 4:58 PM

    Comment #10

    Still trying to persuade season ticket holders to renew are they?

    Do they think fans are complete mugs?

  • armchair fan

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #11


    There’s also reports that the checkies are going to stop inspecting people on the metty and letting them off with fines.

    But it’s just not going to happen.

  • p

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:02 PM

    Comment #12

    There would be low expectation from both fans and media than if he went elsewhere so, a lot less pressure.

    If he can put up with Liverpool, then Newcastle will be paradise and so none of this London stuff.

    Also, I do not see Arsenal, Liverpool, Man utd, Chelsea or Spurs opening up for him any time soon. There may be a vacancy at City but I think they will want to go elsewhere if they replace their manager.

    That leaves us as the best likely option in the PL for the next season or two.

  • p

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:03 PM

    Comment #13

    but I still can’t see it happening!

  • Our Toon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:04 PM

    Comment #14


    When was the last time MA backed his manager? More importantly where was the last time he paid good money to a manager? MA is comfortable with people he can control, Rafa isn’t someone who he will or can control!! You are dead right money talks and it’s something we don’t like to part with. Rafa also does well in cups, something which goes completely against all this regime stands for!!

    Hmm leave a CL bound team with players like Higuain and Hamsik etc and join a team that has ambition of finishing 10th or below every season with no cup runs!!

    Plenty of these stories to run throughout the season and close season and once all tickets are sold Carver will be named on a 12 month rolling contract!!

  • toon kk

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:07 PM

    Comment #15

    think your right Mash is more comfortable with someone he knows.
    I honestly can’t see any top manager willing to work under the tight regime.

  • toonicle

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:13 PM

    Comment #16

    He’s a top manager. We are looking for a yes man head coach. Never going to happen.

  • tequilamag

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:14 PM

    Comment #17

    Rafa spent a fortune at Liverpool and was always twisting that he needed more signings. It won`t happen nor should it. Terrible choice of manager

  • toon kk

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:20 PM

    Comment #18

    I think what’s the point of talking about certain managers coming to the club, I know we all have a dream of one day we’ll be a well managed force again, but that’s all it is a dream.
    We’ve got Mash and mediocre at best.

  • Big Pappa Cissé

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:24 PM

    Comment #19

    Glad to see Aarons back in training after the bad new about De Jong .

    From now On my team when all fit would be :





  • beermonkey

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:27 PM

    Comment #20

    rafa is a control freak so it wont happen
    he is also a winner and like to win another reason he wont come here

  • LGFUAD21

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:39 PM

    Comment #21

    All this stuff about the new deal is misguided.

    Newcastle arent suddenly rich if every club in the league is increasing their wealth.

    Foreign clubs will simply command higher fees given they know how flush we are with money.

    Ultimately its just weakened the Pound against the Euro.

  • optimistic prime

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:43 PM

    Comment #22

    Money talks?

    Ours whispers from the shadows

  • mindshaft

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:47 PM

    Comment #23

    Rafa will not be coming to the toon, apart from the fact he’s a manager rather than a coach there is absolutely no chance we will pay his wage bill

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:48 PM

    Comment #24

    Well Pardew holds no grudges against Toon fans who ran out of patience.

    Although he does believe his time was unfairly judged.

    As for Rafa, can’t see it happening personally.

    So, how are people feeling about the game?


    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:49 PM

    Comment #25

    Does it matter? We could be in any number of shapes come Summer

    Am just focusing on what’s happening now we have Carver and our gem player just popped a lung (again) so is yet to kick a competitive ball for us bit depressing really

    Least Obertan is back he’s grown on me this season


    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:50 PM

    Comment #26

    Troubled not sure I can stand to see that smug look if we lose

  • banjax

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:52 PM

    Comment #27

    Wow. Just the man in my opinion. But before getting carried away – I don’t think this is the Mike Ashley that we all know because Rafa will want a say in the players being brought in and an undertaking that funds would be available to him for much better quality players. Of course stranger things have happened like the parting of the Red Sea and feeding the 5000 with a few loaves and fishes but I reckon this happening ( Mike spending money) is beyond miracles !!

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:52 PM

    Comment #28

    Yo…The speculation between now and the summer is going to be painful 🙂

    On Obertan, his pace was starting to prove a problem for the opposition. He’s grown on me too, but seeing as most were ready to see the back of him, not an amazing achievement.

    As for tonight, it will give the world a right old laugh to see Pardew beat us. I really hope we turn up.


    Feb 11, 2015 at 5:59 PM

    Comment #29

    Brain numbing my friend I can’t be fussed with it

    True I always thought obertan could play a part just not a starting role, closing games out he’s good at imo

    We won’t hear the end of it from Pards if he wins and the papers will be all about him doing over those who abused him.

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:03 PM

    Comment #30

    Yo…To be fair, I can see why he would.

    He has an inferior squad than ours and was constantly called tactically clueless. If he wins, what does it say about the situation?

    If, as many claim, the squad weren’t happy with Pardew as manager, you would hope they put in one hell of a performance tonight.

    That’s the least I’m expecting. Results do go either way, but the lads and Carver best be commited…or else! 🙂

  • Graeme

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:16 PM

    Comment #31

    Ibiza – having them commited is probably the best we can hope for.

  • Jeff from Benwell

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:19 PM

    Comment #32

    We won’t hear the end of it from Pards if he wins and the papers will be all about him doing over those who abused him.

    Quite right to
    Cannot wait to see Catchy crying his stupid eyes out


    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:22 PM

    Comment #33

    I’d quite like Cabella to score and celebrate in front of pardew, which is childish but it would make me smile

    Wouldn’t be quite right, the majority of fans were more than patient with Pardews various draw backs

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:24 PM

    Comment #34

    Graeme.. 🙂

    Jeff…Are you saying you want us to lose to prove Catchy wrong about Pardew?

    Are you also of the opinion that a section of fans drove Pardew out of Newcastle?

  • firebug666

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:29 PM

    Comment #35

    I said this earlier but I’ll say it again, 2 – 0 to the Toon tonight, Hopefully Cabella and Cisse.

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:29 PM

    Comment #36

    Yo…That would be nice.

  • optimistic prime

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:30 PM

    Comment #37

    The fact that this match is going to be viewed as Pardew versus NUFC shows how pathetic media and pundits are.

    I’m sure Pardew will be over the moon adding the scalp of the managerial colossus that is John Carver to his CV!

    Sorry but this match to me is dumb vs dumber or tweedle dumb vs tweedle dee!

    Carver is running Pardews play book page for page, has his own faves substitutes around 70mins no matter what, and 90% of his interviews are utter nonsense.

    I’m going for us to win 2-1.

  • Jeff from Benwell

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:31 PM

    Comment #38

    Just agreeing if it should happen we’ll never hear the end of it.
    Adding at least if the worst should happen – that know nowt mug Catchy will be upset

  • Ibizatoon

    Feb 11, 2015 at 6:33 PM

    Comment #39

    Jeff…Thank god for that, thought you may have your priorities mixed up there.

    OP…Tbf, it’s not just the media etc, we the fans are as bad on this one.


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