Date: 26th March 2019 at 7:00am
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Rafa Benitez’s future at Newcastle has long been a big topic of debate for fans of the club. With every passing week, Benitez’s future has danced on the line of certain and uncertain, with the club seemingly doing a lot to ensure that the Spaniard remains at St. James’ Park.

However, it appears as though their latest moves aren’t going to be quite enough for the boss.

Indeed, according to the Chronicle, Rafa Benitez has said that Newcastle’s latest Academy improvements won’t be enough to keep him at the club on their own.

The manager was asked whether the improvements may be a sign that he’s going to stay, and he said: “No it means we have been talking about it for a while. In the end, we have done it and hopefully it will be for the good of the club.”

He added: “My future is not linked with that but it is still something positive.”

You would think that this is important for Rafa, as it should be, but he’s absolutely right. Minor improvements behind the scenes only play a small part in the day-to-day running of the club; and for Benitez, there’s so much more that he must demand.

Having an improved Academy is great, but it means nothing if the boss isn’t going to have the money to spend to improve his team, nor does it matter if Mike Ashley is simply going to continue angering fans.

The reality is that the improvements to the Newcastle developmental system aren’t likely to have all that much of an impact on Rafa. The real advantages of that decision will be felt in 5-10 years, and even the most optimistic Newcastle fan won’t be expecting him to remain as our manager for that long.

So, sure, this is a sign that the club is going in the right direction, and that will encourage Benitez to stay. But as even a small motivating factor in the pursuit of his retention? It’s certainly not that – and the manager is absolutely right to take that approach.


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