Date: 22nd June 2019 at 9:57am
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Tony Cascarino shared that he thought Rafa Benitez had done brilliantly well in many ways as Newcastle United manager.

The talkSPORT pundit shared that he read George Caulkin’s article for The Times, which stated Benitez had one hand on the exit door, and stated that he found it interesting that the journalist made it clear that all the Spanish manager was trying to do was improve the Magpies.

Cascarino revealed that he thought Benitez wasn’t demanding the earth in order to stay at St James Park before heaping praise on the manager for wanting Salomon Rondon at the Magpies last season.

“I found it really interesting reading George’s piece, if you dissect it, all Rafa is trying to do is improve the football club,” said Cascarino on talkSPORT (8:19am, Saturday, June 22nd).

“He’s trying to make the personnel and the footballers who come to the club better by the transfer targets.

“Rafa just feels…he is not demanding the earth, he never has done in football, you think of Rondon one of the best deals last year, who came in on loan, he tried to get him permanently but the club wouldn’t do that cause of his age.

“Ended up flying and he has been brilliant, now he has to go from the club so he actually has done brilliantly well in many ways.”

OPINION

Caulkin paints a bleak picture for Benitez’s future at Newcastle with the journalist seemingly implying that with the manager only having nine days left on his contract, that his exit borders on being inevitable. Given that Benitez did well to guide the Magpies to a 13th placed finish in the Premier League in the club’s latest season as well as seeing them finishing 10th in the 2017/18 campaign, it would be a big blow to the club if he left. Cascarino clearly feels the same as he has nothing but praise for the Spanish manager. The pundit clearly feels what Benitez wants from Newcastle is understandable and it’s hard not to agree. Based on Caulkin’s article, it’s clear all Benitez wants to do is improve the Magpies, and it will say so much about the direction the club is likely heading in if he departs. As for Cascarino’s remarks on Rondon, the pundit is right to praise the impact the forward had at St James Park while on loan from West Bromwich Albion. The 29-year-old scored an impressive 12 goals and assisted seven in his 33 outings for the club. Rondon’s impact at the Magpies is further shown by the fact he was involved in 42% of the Magpies’ league goals, as per Transfermarkt, in his latest campaign.