Trusted north-east reporter George Caulkin has confirmed that Rafa Benitez is ‘pushing’ for more talks with Lee Charnley this week – with him STILL yet to receive any response from Mike Ashley over a new contract.
The Spaniard has been like a broken record in recent press conferences or post/pre-match interviews, insisting that he’s now ‘waiting’ to hear back from the club’s hierarchy after submitting his contract requests.
Several weeks on and Benitez is still waiting for a response while Mike Ashley unwinds following a reported ‘Easter break’.
Here’s what George Caulkin has had to say during his latest piece for The Times:
‘Benítez is pushing for more talks this week; he has still had no substantive response to his contractual wish-list, which is less about budget or salary than guarantees the club will stick to their promises.’
It’s interesting to read here that Rafa’s more focused on the club’s ability to stick to their promises – and not so much fixated on transfer kitty’s or his own salary.
George went on to assess the current situation at St James’ Park, insisting that it’s the Spaniard’s future is on the minds of everyone at the club – yet no breakthrough has been achieved despite claims that the club are ‘committed’ to keeping him:
‘Players know it, supporters know it and although Lee Charnley, the managing director, says the club is committed to keeping the 59-year-old, negotiations have not been fruitful and time is slipping away.
‘They finished tenth last season and are 12th now, but their return to the Premier League has been a grind. Benítez wants more.’
The wait goes on, but with three games of the season left and just over a month until Benitez’s deal expires, something’s got to give soon.