There have been several reports that Mike Ashley would like to extend Rafa’s contract to keep him on Tyneside past the 18 months he still has left on his current contract.
This after Ashley has refused to support his manager in last summer’s transfer market – which is one reason we are one point above the relegation zone at the moment and desperately trying to sign players in the final 9 days of the transfer window.
And Ashley refused to support Rafa last January when we could have brought Andros Townsend back for £15M but he refused to spend any money – and then Andros’ transfer fee last summer went up by £10M.
Last week suddenly Mike was very good to Rafa and told him he was willing to bring in players to help Rafa save Newcastle this season from yet another relegation under Mike Ashley.
And now is the exact wrong time to start to talk to Rafa about extending his contract at Newcastle.
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Maybe Ashley knows that a would-be buyer is only interested in Newcastle if Rafa stays at the club – and if Rafa walks – they walk.
And that’s probably true for any other potential buyer of Newcastle United.
And we don’t think Rafa will commit to anything at Newcastle until we are at least safe from relegation.
That’s the first hurdle and after that, he will want to know who the new owners will be – if there is indeed to be a change in ownership.
And then if Ashley decides to stay in charge – which would not surprise us – we’d be shocked if Rafa would sign any extension to his Newcastle contract.
And at least we have a sensible manager who has told Mike Ashley he will not discuss an extension until this very important January transfer window is over.
And perhaps Rafa has already hinted to Ashley that how well he does in bringing in new players this month will help Rafa make a decision on whether he stays long term on Tyneside.
Rafa has not been treated fairly or well by the Newcastle owner, and Ashley has proved to Rafa his word is not to be trusted.