Rafa Benitez will leave Newcastle United when his contract expires at the end of next week, according to the Daily Mail.
The Spaniard’s current deal on Tyneside runs out on next Sunday, and the report suggests that he will not reach an agreement on new terms before then.
Talks between Benitez and owner Mike Ashley are understood to have come to a standstill, and the Mail suggest that any hopes of negotiations reopening are slim.
This would be absolutely unforgivable from Ashley. After three years in which Benitez has come close to working wonders for the club with relatively little backing, to let him walk away without putting up any kind of fight or showing him any kind of ambition to take the club forward is simply appalling. Rafa is, without a doubt, the best manager this club has had since Sir Bobby Robson, and with the right owner behind him, the sky would be the limit at St. James’ Park. But time and time again Ashley has proven that he is not the right owner, and time and time again the Magpies have suffered because of it. There could well be some final, miraculous twist in this saga, but at the moment, that seems worryingly unlikely. All supporters can do now is hope and pray. Losing Rafa would be a hammer blow that they could do without immensely.