According to the Times’ reliable north-east reporter George Caulkin, Newcastle are no closer to reaching agreement with Rafa Benitez over a new deal – with no talks progressing over one-year and five-year deals on the table since last summer.
Caulkin states that a stand off of sorts has occurred – with “no substantive discussions” taking place since the summer.
It seems talks have failed to go anywhere up until this point with Rafa wanting “investment in the team, training ground and academy” – and a one off big money buy to sign Miguel Almiron doesn’t suddenly solve all of his concerns.
Here’s what he’s had to say during his latest piece for the Times:
“Since the end of the summer transfer window, there have been no substantive discussions about a new contract.
“Back then, Newcastle offered Benítez a five-year deal and then a one-year extension and have since reiterated that the latter remains on the table. Benítez wanted evidence that the club would “do things right,” meaning investment in the team, training ground and academy.”
Although things have every chance of changing, with things likely to come to a head between now and May, this is a reminder that our January business was probably a move that simply kept Rafa from walking, not something that suddenly convinces him to stay beyond the summer.
Spending one off amounts that break our transfer record is great, but it can only be the start of spending as far as Mike Ashley investment is concerned.
Rafa clearly wants to build the club way beyond just our starting 11, with his wish for improved training facilities and a better Academy something we’ve heard about for months now.
Recent reports have suggested that Ashley may come up with a compromise and offer him a three-year deal which include some spending assurances, but time will tell if it’s enough to tempt the Spaniard into staying on Tyneside.