Deal or no deal? Rafa Benitez talks drag on at Newcastle

Rafa Benitez has indicated that he will stay at Newcastle United '“ though he's yet to reach an agreement over transfers.

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Benitez's representatives have been involved in talks with the club's hierarchy for a number of weeks.

United's manager – whose contract runs out next summer – is looking for assurances on a number of issues, notably transfer funds.

Benitez will only sign a new contract if he is satisfied that the club's ambitions match his own.

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And the 58-year-old could simply see out the final year of his deal.

The Mirror report that Newcastle owner Mike Ashley "has agreed to bankroll a summer spending spree", though the Gazette understands that Benitez and the club were some way apart in their early discussions.

Ashley again said earlier this month that Benitez could have "every penny generated by the club", meaning transfer funds must come from profits.

Benitez wants to take United even higher up the Premier League table after guiding the team to a 10th-placed finish this season.

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Meanwhile, West Ham United are set to appoint Manuel Pellegrini as their new manager.

Benitez – who has a £6million release clause in his contract – had been on the club's managerial shortlist, but Pellegrini was always their preferred choice.