Rafa Benitez hints at frustration at Newcastle United ahead of transfer deadline

Rafa Benitez.
Rafa Benitez.

Rafa Benitez has hinted at his frustration at Newcastle United ahead of the transfer deadline.

The club, which abandoned a loan move for Lazio left-back Jordan Lukaku last week, is yet to sign a player in this month’s transfer window.

You have to ask, but you know my position. I can (talk about transfers), but I don’t want to. I have nothing to say.

Rafa Benitez

Benitez – who submitted lists of potential targets to managing director Lee Charnley last month – is waiting for news ahead of tomorrow night’s Premier League home game against Manchester City.

Asked how important the next few days will be for the club, Benitez said: “I will not talk too much about this.

“I have been talking about this for the last two years. I will just try to concentrate on the Manchester City game.”

Benitez, forced to sell to buy in the summer after refusing to sign a new deal, has refused to talk about the transfer window since admitting he was “worried” after the Boxing Day defeat to Liverpool at Anfield.

“I will not talk about the transfer window,” said United’s manager, who will leave the club in the summer when his contract expires if he isn’t backed this month.

“You have to ask, but you know my position.

“I can (talk about transfers), but I don’t want to. I have nothing to say.”

Tellingly, Benitez added after Saturday’s FA Cup defeat to Watford: “Today is the 26th of January. We have what we have. I have no reason to say anything more.

“We’re trying to do what we have to do. Today is the 26th. We will see what happens.

“I don’t want to say too much, I’m disappointed we have lost.”

Asked if the club was close to a transfer breakthrough, Benitez said: “I have no idea.”

Benitez wants to sign a No 10 and a winger as well as a left-back in the window, which close at 11pm on Thursday.

“It’s important to have new faces, but we will see what happens,” said Benitez.

Newcastle are 17th in the Premier League, and two points above the relegation zone, ahead of the visit of Pep Guardiola’s side to St James’s Park.