And so the discussions to have Rafa sign a new deal at Newcastle will continue, although there were some reports yesterday that talks have reached a deadlock.
And it’s clear Rafa has not heard back from Mike Ashley on the requirements he needs from the owner for the manager to be willing to stay at the club.
Rafa will meet with Managing Director Lee Charnley this week, and we are hoping something can be worked out this week before we play Liverpool at home on Saturday night.
That could be Rafa’s last home game as manager of Newcastle United.
A smiling Rafa Benitez at Brighton on Saturday
Rafa has said he needs the talks to conclude one way or the other soon; that’s because if he does have to leave Newcastle, he will have to start looking for another job.
The Sunday Sun reported yesterday that both PSG and Marseille were interested in signing Benitez if the Newcastle talks break down.
The 59-year-old said he didn’t have to meet Ashley when asked in an interview in the Chronicle today:
“No. I can see Lee,”
“Charnley will come back with us on the plane from Brighton and we can talk any time. If they want to organize something, fine. That’s no problem.”
“I’m really pleased with the fans, at home and away.”
“Especially the away fans who come here, such a long distance, to support the team and to support their manager.”
“I’m really pleased with that.”
“It’s the same as I said before; if we have any news, we will let you know – now it’s just the games.”
“Hopefully we will have some meetings in the next week and then we will see where we are.”
“It needs to be sorted sooner rather than later because that will be good for both parties.”
At the Amex Stadium on Saturday the 3,000 away supporters kept chanting they wanted the manager to stay.
But this time Rafa will not allow his heart to rule his head and he wants firm assurances from Ashley that he will get financial support from the owner in several areas so he can build a top team at Newcastle.
It’s not clear he will get them from the owner who has shown no ambition to make Newcastle a top club in the twelve years he has owned Newcastle.