Just hours after David Sullivan confirmed a ‘high-calibre’ manager was ‘very close’ to being appointed at West Ham, trusted North-East reporter Martin Hardy has revealed that it looks set to be Manuel Pellegrini – easing fears over Rafa Benitez’s future.
It doesn’t change the fact that Rafa is clearly unsettled and needs assurances from Ashley to stay beyond this summer, however it’s news that could come as a welcome bit of relief for several anxious NUFC fans.
Sky announced on Thursday night that Newcastle were ‘confident’ that Benitez would remain at the club, and that ties in with the idea that ex-Man City boss Pellegrini is in line to takeover at the London Stadium.
Told Pellegrini to West Ham…which might calm things a bit in the north east…
— Martin Hardy (@mhardysport) May 17, 2018
Pellegrini also fits the bill perfectly when you look at West Ham’s statement on Thursday afternoon. They said they were ‘very close’ to appointing a man with a ‘proven record’ both in the ‘Premier League’ and ‘European football’ and whilst Rafa also fits that bill, it sounds just like Pellegrini too.
For what it’s worth, reports in Chile are also saying that Pellegrino will be unveiled as West Ham’s new boss on Monday.
As I said at the beginning, this doesn’t change the fact that there’s a lot to sort between Benitez and NUFC before we can start looking ahead, but hearing noises that he WON’T be their new manager is at least reassuring for now.