Date: 1st August 2018 at 4:53pm
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As far as controversy goes this piece is never going to make the front pages but, nevertheless, it is slightly bemusing.

Not that long ago, when the Spanish Football Federation decided to axe their national team boss, Julen Lopetegui after he’d announced that he’d signed a contract with Real Madrid to replace Zinedine Zidane, Rafael Benitez announced that he’d been offered the chance to manage Spain during the recent World Cup.

Today, the media are suggesting that wasn’t quite the case.

The respected news source, the Express, is running with the suggestion that it was Newcastle who offered the Spanish Federation the services of Benitez.

Their article carries remarks attributed to the president of the Spanish Federation, Luis Rubiales, that infer the above was the case, with the comments being made during an interview with a Spanish radio station going by the name of COPE.

“When I sacked Julen I immediately called Hierro and told him I didn’t want to make any changes. Two days later a letter arrived from Newcastle saying ‘Are you interested in our coach? He’s at your disposition.’ We said thanks but no.”

Intriguing!

However, I’m grateful that the Spanish Federation opted to appoint Fernando Hierro in an interim position.

If Rafael had taken on the role, his head could well have been turned.

He may have realised that the grass is greener away from St James Park when it comes to working alongside a hierarchy that appears to make things as difficult as possible.

But, having crashed out at such an early stage of the competition, I wonder if the Spanish Federation now regret turning down the offer from Newcastle United?

I guess we’ll never know!

 

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