Newcastle United

Newcastle could lose key man to Premier League club’s ambitions

The Transfer Tavern’s Newcastle drinkers are furious with reports claiming West Ham could swoop for their popular manager Rafa Benitez. 

The Spaniard couldn’t stop the Magpies sliding out of the top flight last season after inheriting a real mess from Steve McClaren, but made himself a fan favourite at St. James’ Park by deciding to stay on for their Championship campaign.

It hasn’t gone as smoothly as some expected but the Toon are still on course to return to the Premier League at the first time of asking, currently a point clear at the top of the Championship with just eight games to go until the end of the season.

However, the Rafalution on Tyneside could well be brought to an end if West Ham’s form doesn’t improve in the coming weeks, with Mirror Football claiming Benitez is being lined up by the east Londoners as Slaven Bilic’s replacement.

The Irons have become more ambitious since moving to the London Stadium and although Bilic is well-liked by West Ham supporters here in the Tavern, his side have struggled to break into the top half this season and have now lost their last three games on the bounce.

It’s claimed West Ham were close to appointing Benitez two years ago before Real Madrid came calling and suggested Benitez could welcome the move after becoming frustrated with Mike Ashley’s reluctance to spend in January.

However, Bilic still has some time to save his job with the Hammers hierarchy wanting two wins from his next four games, which will see the club face relegation battlers Hull City, Swansea and Sunderland.

Would Benitez do a better job than Bilic at West Ham? Let us know by commenting below!

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