Rafa Benitez has been linked with a move to West Ham United and though it’s still a longshot, it’ll make some of the Newcastle fans pretty nervy. The Spaniard led the Magpies to a top-half finish after being promoted last season and if he is backed with decent money, he can definitely make the Magpies a European side, something Sean Dyche has managed this season with Burnley with a paltry transfer budget.
West Ham recently got rid of their manager David Moyes even after he managed to keep them in the division. The club is in a mess, to be honest, and if Rafa does make the jump, it’d surprise quite a few.
We look at 3 reasons why Benitez might stay put at Newcastle United…
#3 He knows the squad well
Benitez inherited a decent squad from Steve McClaren but by the time he did, it was too late. Some of the big-name players left after relegation and the gaffer built a team with a British spine which helped the team in the Championship. He has managed to get the best out of the players which has helped the team finish with 44 points this season.
West Ham have a few good players themselves but the difference isn’t that big to be honest. If he is backed with a few million quid, he could make the team much stronger. Benitez could get the better out of an underperforming Hammers squad as well, but is it a risk worth taking?
#2 The West Ham board are dodgy
Mike Ashley has gotten away with it because of the connect Rafa has with the fans. Despite minimal resources, he stayed put and helped the club secure their status.
The West Ham owners have promised a lot but have failed to deliver. The signature of Patrice Evra last January pretty much summed up their ambition back then. Will Rafa really get the assurances? Unlikely.
#1 A special connection with the fans
Yes, this might sound extremely clichéd, but the gaffer has a special relationship with the fans. Part of the reason why is because Benitez has made the team fight on the pitch.
Even when the score line is one-sided in the opposition team’s favour, you can’t fault the team for lack of effort. The same wasn’t seen under Alan Pardew, John Carver and Steve McClaren.