Newcastle United confirmed today that manager Rafa Benitez will leave the club after his contract with the Magpies expires, as the two parties could not come to a deal over a new contract.
The Mirror suggested that the Premier League club offered the Spaniard a one-year deal and a £50 million transfer budget.
Benitez joined Newcastle in 2016, but couldn’t help the Magpies avoid the drop as they were relegated to the Championship. But the Spanish manager brought them up the very next season, and finished 10th in the first season and 13th in the second season of the Premier League.
With Benitez departing Newcastle United, and new owners set to take charge of the club, which direction will the club take and who will lead them into the future?
Let’s take a look at 3 managers who can replace Rafa Benitez at Newcastle United:
Jose Mourinho – The bold option
Jose Mourinho, former Manchester United, Chelsea, and Real Madrid manager, has been linked with the Newcastle United role in recent weeks, and could be a coup for the new owners of the club if they can convince him to sign for them.
Mourinho has vast Premier League experience, having managed Chelsea and Manchester United for several years, winning three Premier League titles with Chelsea. He could also be tempted to take up a challenge like the Newcastle role, much like his idol and mentor Bobby Robson did years ago.
However, it remains to be seen if Mourinho is still interested in club football management as he recently revealed that he would like to manage an international team: “I want to compete in new competitions. I think about the World Cup and the European Championships.
“For a long time I have had the desire to try out such an adventure. Right now, I see myself more at a national team than with a new club. Is Portugal the right team for me? Not necessarily,” said the Portuguese manager.
Chris Hughton – The reunion
Chris Hughton was unceremoniously sacked by Brighton last season, despite the success he brought to the club by bringing them to the Premier League, and then keeping them in the league in the very first season.
Hughton would make for a sensible signing as Newcastle United manager as he has past experience as the Magpies manager, having first taken charge of them on a temporary basis, and then on a permanent basis between 2008 and 2010.
Following Newcastle’s relegation in 2009, Hughton was named permanent manager of the English club, and he swiftly took them back to the Premier League, but was sacked by December.
Hughton is a good tactician and knows how to work in the transfer market with little money, while he has vast Premier League experience too.
Sean Dyche – The safe option
Sean Dyche has done remarkably well as Burnley manager since joining the club in 2012, taking the English side to the Premier League on two occasions.
Burnley’s first promotion under Dyche didn’t go according to plan as they went down in the very first season. But their second promotion to the Premier League, which happened in the 2016–17, has been much better as finished 16th in the first season, a magical 7th place finish in the second season, and a 15th place finish in the last season.
Dyche may not be one to play free-flowing, attacking football, concentrating rather on getting the best result for the team with a limited budget.
The English manager, like Hughton, is a good spotter of talent and has bought players for a cheap sum who have then gone on to become very good players.