Sky Sports pundit Keith Downie has claimed that there is “willingness on both sides” for Rafa Benitez to reach an agreement with Newcastle United over extending his stay on Tyneside.
The Spaniard is understood to have sat down with the club over finally agreeing a new deal, with his current one set to expire in the very near future.
And while Downie did suggest that talks could rumble on for a while longer, he also hinted that things were moving in a positive direction.
Writing on his personal Twitter account, he said: “Rafa Benítez sitting down with Newcastle today to thrash out his future.
“Talks likely to carry over into tomorrow.
“There’s willingness on both sides to reach an agreement.”
Rafa Benítez sitting down with Newcastle today to thrash out his future. Talks likely to carry over into tomorrow. There’s willingness on both sides to reach an agreement #NUFC
— Keith Downie (@SkySports_Keith) May 16, 2019
Nothing is concrete, of course, but certainly, this will have Newcastle fans hoping for the best. If both parties in a negotiation are keen for it to get over the line then it will surely take something out of the ordinary for it to break down. That being said, this is Mike Ashley we’re talking about, a man who prides himself on being a stubborn negotiator. Even in the most positive of circumstances, many Newcastle fans will not trust him to get things signed and sealed, and they will not allow their hopes to spike until they see Rafa himself holding a scarf in front of the Gallowgate End. At the moment, this is the most important thing for many supporters and of they can get a deal wrapped up for Benitez early doors it will definitely provide a real confidence boost going into a preseason that fans will be hoping can be a turning point for the club. The second half of this season was arguably the Magpies’ most impressive yet under the Spaniard, and with a couple of new signings, who knows where they could end up next year.