This comes from the Spaniard’s final pre-match press conference of the season earlier today, with him said to be in good spirits but failing to give any definitive update on his future.
Here’s what he had to say about any new deal, suggesting a ‘decision making’ meeting should take place next week:
“My future – I said also last week that we will have a meeting. So, next week we will have a meeting any time, and we will let you know if we have any news.”
“Lee Charnley has to be there, but I do not know who else. Mike Ashley? I expect he will be there.
“I don’t want to talk too much about the meeting because still, we do not know.”
“If you have a meeting of this level, at this stage of the season, it has to be a meeting where you have some decision making. So, normally it has to be the owner around, too.”
Rafa then had the following to say about Rondon, suggesting the decision to ‘sign him or not’ may have to wait until West Brom’s play-off results, with his price-tag set to go up if they gain promotion:
“He has been a key player for us…. We have to wait a little bit (to see) what’ll happen because everybody knows about the release clause.”
“We have to see what’s happening with me first. In 10 days we’ll know.”
West Brom will know whether they’ve made the play-off finals in 10 days time, with them facing Aston Villa in the first leg of their semi-final tomorrow.
Gain promotion and it’s said they’ll demand above £20m for the striker, however a set fee of £16.5m will be available to us once again if they remain a Championship side.
We refused to activate that release clause last summer – which is worrying given Rondon’s now a year older – however he’s now proven himself after an 11 goal, 8 assist season, with him insisting that he’s like a fine wine and getting better with age.
Let’s hope Mike Ashley attends and agrees to Rafa’s demands – one of which will no doubt include the permanent signing of Salomon Rondon.
We’re approaching a huge crossroads and it’s vital we get this right. Lose Rafa and Rondon and there will be a huge hole to fill at St James’ Park this summer.