Journalist reveals worrying new details about the transfer budget offered to Benitez..

According to the Echo’s Paul Wilson, the summer budget offered to Rafa Benitez this summer will factor in ‘wages and agents’ payments’ – suggesting he will NOT have £60m to spend on transfer fees alone.

This sounds about right in the world of Mike Ashley, and could mean Rafa will have less to spend than we think – even if it’s been reported that it’s ‘£60m PLUS player sales’.

By this logic, a £20m signing who’s being paid £2m a year on a 5-year-deal is much more than just £20m, with his wage packet over those five years coming to £10m alone, meaning an overall package of £30m – and this does not factor in inevitable agent fees.

This is all hypothetical, but it proves what a limited budget this would be should these claims be true.

Another potential issue is the fact Ashley often accepts staggered payments for players, meaning a £15m sale would not automatically add a big chunk of cash to Benitez’s transfer budget.

Here’s a worrying snippet from his latest piece for the Northern Echo today, suggesting there’s more to the budget that’s been offered to Benitez than meets the eye – and not in a good way:

Benitez has always insisted he would ideally like to remain at St James’ Park, but a number of his concerns at Newcastle’s long-term transfer plans remain unaddressed.

‘The Magpies’ summer transfer budget is understood to be around £60m, plus anything raised by player sales, although this sum encompasses wages, agents’ payments and loan agreements as well as transfer fees.

Of equal concern is Ashley’s insistence that there will not be any fundamental changes to the way Newcastle currently conduct their business. Benitez will have to run all prospective deals past Ashley via Charnley, a process that has resulted in a series of log-jams in the past and which Benitez blames for missing out on a number of leading targets.

This is just part of the problem as well.

Not only would this give Rafa a very limited budget, leaving his hands pretty tied when it comes to making several significant signings, this doesn’t factor in Ashley’s strict transfer policy.

Let’s hope it’s £60m on transfer fees and NOT a budget that accounts for wages and agent fees too. Sadly though, the latter sounds about right under Mike Ashley.

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About Olly Hawkins

Olly has been a Junior Magpie from birth. As a season ticket holder and avid Newcastle United fan - he eats, sleeps and breathes all things NUFC.

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