The Northern Echo has confirmed this morning that Rafa Benitez will not be quitting, however has requested a transfer briefing with Lee Charnley in the next 24 hours in order to kick-start the club’s summer recruitment drive.
It was reported by the Mail over the weekend that Benitez’s future was in doubt, and whilst he is thought be frustrated about our lack of transfer activity, the Echo have described such rumours of him to be ‘dramatic’.
The Echo state that Benitez believed he had deals for for Tammy Abraham, Florian Lejeune, Fabian Delph and either Pepe Reina or Willy Caballero tied up 2 weeks ago, however several of those have failed to materialise to his dismay.
Abraham has opted for Swansea, Delph looks set to join Stoke City, Reina’s future at Napoli remains undecided and Caballero has seemingly chosen a move to Chelsea over Newcastle.
A deal for Florian Lejeune looks likely to go ahead, but this is a deal Benitez expected to be concluded by now, with negotiations over how the fee will be structured and paid appearing to be taking longer than expected – Rafa will be looking for some answers in the meeting as to why all of the above deals have not worked out.
Hopefully Rafa’s meeting with Charnley will be a productive one, with a breakthrough needed to ease Rafa’s frustrations as he looks to rebuild the squad yet again this summer.