Claims that Rafa Benitez has demanded funds of £75 million to spend on strikers if he is to stay, appear to be how some people interpreted his post-match comments following the defeat to Arsenal on Monday.
But if you listen to what he actually said, it is not exactly the point he was making.
A report in the Daily Mirror yesterday suggested that it was some sort of ultimatum, which is not how it appeared to us.
They report Benitez said: “The final third, we have been speaking all season… the final third you have to spend £40m, £50m, £75m.”
He is quite right, too.
The point he was making is for a team to be able to compete week in, week out, and challenge the top six sides, they would need to spend those sums of money.
But Rafa has consistently maintained that he does not want, or expect, Newcastle to be transformed overnight into a title-chasing club, or even to be perennial Champion’s League contenders.
He wants to be given a budget that will see the club pull away from their annual relegation scrap, consolidate themselves as a top half team, and if results go better than expected, could push for a top seven or eight finish.
After two or three seasons as an established squad, maybe then they could increase the budget, due to higher prize payouts, and look to kick on towards Europa League places.
To suggest that he is demanding ridiculous amounts for the next transfer window is mischief-making.
It is misinformation like this that gives fans in other regions of the country the wrong impression that Newcastle fans expect success, when all they have ever wanted is a team they can be proud of, that wears the black and white stripes with pride, and makes them excited for Saturdays to arrive.
Do you expect Newcastle to entice Benitez to stay? Do you think it would take a huge budget to convince him? Let us know…
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