Rafa Benitez has been very successful in his football management career – so much so that he is a respected and admired coach around the world – and in the Premier League.
He has been at Newcastle for three years now, but because of a lack of investment from owner Mike Ashley, he has only been able to stabilize the club once he got us promoted from the Championship two years ago at the first attempt.
The previous two seasons we have been fighting relegation but Rafa and the players fought through to finish in 10th place the first season back (2017-2018) and 13th place last season with one more point than in the previous season – 45 points vs 44 points.
With Rafa’s three-year contract up next month he really wants to stay at Newcastle but wants to be successful again as he was at Valencia, Liverpool, and Napoli – and even at Chelsea for 8 months as the temporary manager when he won the Europa League for them in 2013.
Rafa Benitez – looking for help from above?
But for Rafa to stay he must have the tools so he can be successful and that’s what he’s really negotiating with the owner.
The fact this thing is taking so long and Ashley seems so stubborn on things indicates the owner would like to keep control of the financials and transfers at the club.
And that would mean Rafa will find it very difficult to become successful at Newcastle.
There’s something seriously wrong when an owner has to be persuaded again and again what he needs to do to have his club become one of the top clubs in England.
And be worth an awful lot of money.
It should disqualify Ashley from being an owner of a Premier League club.
This is another way of looking at what Rafa is trying to do for Newcastle in his negotiations, and how Ashley seems to be resisting at every turn.
It is not good.
We hope for a quick announcement this week that Ashley has finally seen the light – but we are not going to hold our breath on that.
But we are willing to be (very) surprised.