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Dublin: 11°C Saturday 19 September 2020

Benitez promised 'every last penny' to build for Newcastle's Premier League return

The promotion-winning manager looks set to stay at St James’s Park after having talks with Mike Ashley.

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez
Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez
Image: Stu Forster

RAFAEL BENITEZ LOOKS set to continue as Newcastle United manager in the Premier League next season after receiving assurances from owner Mike Ashley about his budget for player signings.

The Spaniard took Newcastle up at the first time of asking as Championship winners, having failed to keep the Magpies in the Premier League.

Benitez reportedly considered leaving St James’s Park after the club failed to acquire his targets in the January transfer window and the manager had failed to commit his future to the club in the aftermath of their promotion and subsequent title win.

Promotion to the top flight was worth an estimated £170 million last year and Ashley has pledged that Benitez will “have every last penny that the club generates through promotion, player sales and other means in order to build for next season”.

A club statement read: “It was agreed by all parties that the meeting was very positive and constructive. Mike again congratulated Rafa and his team on gaining promotion to the Premier League as champions.

“Plans for next season were discussed, including the purchase and loan of players to add to the squad in readiness for the Premier League season.”

Benitez added: “I’m pleased with how the meeting went and the positive approach we are all taking together to build on what we have started this season.

“There will be challenges ahead of course, the summer will not be easy, but the hard work has been going on for some time and we can now continue positively with the development of the squad ahead of the start of the new season. I wish fans an enjoyable summer!”

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