Benitez on the brink?

Rafa Benitez is entering the final week of his contract at Newcastle United, and his future remains up-in-the-air as the club have steadfastly refused to meet his demands.

Benitez has held talks with Newcastle over the last six-months, and once the season finished – he made it known of certain issues he needed resolving.

We understand that the main issue has always been Benitez’s demands for £100million transfer budget, and for that to be written into any deal.

Newcastle’s hierarchy have refused to budge, leaving Benitez in limbo – although his representatives have been talking to a number of clubs about possible vacancies, which has seen an offer emerge from China.

There is also the issue that the club could be set for a change in ownership in the coming days or weeks. The Bin Zayed Group backed by Sheikh Khaled Bin Zayed Al Nehayan, is understood to be driving a bid – but as it stands a deal does not look like being on the brink of completion.

However, it is also not known if the Bin Zayed Group would want Benitez to stay, as there is some doubt about that.

As such talk about Benitez replacements have emerged, and we understand that Newcastle-born Michael Carrick and Burnley boss Sean Dyche would be under consideration.

As it stands Boomakers have former Birmingham, Leeds and Middlesbrough boss Garry Monk as favourite at 5/1, ahead of Dyche at 6/1.

BetVictor’s Head of antepost Football Michael Triffitt commented: “There will be no shortage of candidates looking to replace Rafa Benitez at St James Park.

“Former Birmingham gaffer Garry Monk is 5/1 favourite in our opening show whilst current Burnley manager Sean Dyche is just 6/1 with the chance to manage a big club in the top flight surely one that would appeal after years of battling to avoid relegation in Lancashire.

“Chris Hughton is 8/1 and no stranger to Toon fans having managed the club previously whilst Jose Mourinho has been recently linked and can be backed at 6/1.

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