Ant and Dec will speak for plenty of Newcastle United fans here and Mike Ashley must be feeling the heat after dropping the ball with Rafa
Rafa Benitez will leave Newcastle when his contract expires on Sunday, June 30, it was announced today.
The Spaniard has done a sensational job with the Magpies after inheriting a side that destined for relegation three years ago.
The 59-year-old got the club straight back up as champions and operated in his three years at St James Park with next to no transfer budget, achieving mid-table finishes each time.
In fact, the club actually made £11.2 million on transfers during his time at the club.
Naturally, the fallout has been very damaging for the club and the fans are not happy with Mike Ashley for failing to keep Benitez.
Famous Geordies and legendary TV presenting duo Ant and Dec seemed to have summed it up as perfectly as anyone.
And they are not the only ones. Club icon Alan Shearer weighed in on the situation, too.
“A world class manager. A manager who performed so well in very difficult circumstances. A manager who understood the fans. Thanks and good luck Rafa Benitez, you were brilliant for the Toon,” he said.
Newcastle’s official statement definitively closed the chapter on Benitez and it doesn’t appear like there will be a Lee Bowyer/Charlton-like U-turn.
“We have worked hard to extend Rafa’s contract over a significant period of time,” said a Newcastle statement.
“However, it has not been – and will not be – possible to reach an agreement with Rafa and his representatives.”
The statement added: “The process to appoint a successor will now begin.”
“We would like to thank Rafa and his coaching team for their efforts over the last three years and their significant contribution to what has been collectively achieved,” the statement added.
“We would also like to thank our supporters, players and staff for their patience during a period of uncertainty.”
Newcastle owner Ashley is said to b in talks to sell the club to United Arab Emirates billionaire Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s investment group this summer. Reports suggest that news of Benitez’s departure does not affect that deal.