Newcastle United news: Pundit doubts Toon takeover, West Ham dealt huge pre-match blow while left-back is wanted by Serie A club

Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley
Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley

Newcastle United are flying high at the moment - but one BBC pundit believes the club's third straight Premier League win isn't necessarily a good thing.

Why? Because ex-England international Danny Mills thinks Rafa Benitez's success will only keep owner Mike Ashley at St James's Park.

This will not come as great reading for Magpies fans, who are desperate for the Sports Direct tycoon to end his 11-year tenure on Tyneside.

READ MORE: Newcastle United facing battle for in-demand international winger - reports

"It was a fantastic win for them," said the 41-year-old following last night's 2-1 win at Burnley.

"To get one win is great but to get a third... in the first half they were winning at a canter.

"They should not have conceded that goal - Sam Vokes is 17 yards out, it was a free header from the edge of the box but Burnley offered nothing in the second half.

READ MORE: Miles Starforth's player ratings: 'Powerful' Mo Diame leads Newcastle to vital victory at Burnley

"What a turn around for Rafa Benitez, but the problem for Newcastle fans is it looks like Rafa will do it again - get them out of trouble with no money and that means Mike Ashley stays in place, and that is not what Newcastle United fans want."

Meanwhile, West Ham United are enduring an injury crisis ahead of their trip to the North East.

The London Evening Standard revealed Winston Reid (Knee), Carlos Sanchez (Knee), Andriy Yarmolenko (Achilles), Manuel Lanzini (ACL) and Ryan Fredericks (Fibula) are all definite absentees on Saturday while key attacker Marko Arnautovic is a doubt.

READ MORE: Gateshead respond to Peter Beardsley coaching links as his Newcastle future remains unclear

It isn't all bad news for the Hammers though, who are set to welcome back summer signing Jack Wilshere following a three-month ankle surgery layoff.

Elsewhere, Gazzetta dello Sport report Newcastle outcast Achraf Lazaar will be allowed to leave the club on loan in January.

The 26-year-old almost joined the Serie A club on deadline day in the summer but a move failed to materialise.

READ MORE: Achraf Lazaar's poor U23s performance showed why Rafa Benitez was right not to take him to Burnley

On his return to Tyneside, the Moroccan was ordered to train with the U23s, although was captured training with the first-team a few weeks ago, after the international break left the Magpies short of bodies.

There had been talk that Lazaar could be drafted into Benitez’s starting line-up at Turf Moor on Monday night with Paul Dummett injured.

However his inclusion in the U23's win over Stoke City instead is an alarming sign that his career at Newcastle is set to come to an end.