It hasn’t been missed by anyone in the football world, well maybe Rio Ferdinand, but Newcastle United are a bit of a shambles currently. For a club that sells out their home ground every game, they have been continually underfunded while their much-maligned owner Mike Ashley has been “actively” selling the club.
The current manager Rafael Benitez is considered one of the top elite coaches by UEFA. This paired with the underfunding, makes Newcastle fans wonder what Mike Ashley really wants. With 6 months left on his current contract, and a stalemate going on regarding transfers, Geordies have been resigned to the fact that Rafa will not be renewing for next season.
Newcastle fans also fear that Rafael Benitez will leave at the end of January if reinforcements are not signed. If the unthinkable did happen, then we have listed some of the possible replacements for the Spaniard. Assuming that these managers would be happy to work under the current regime.
The current Celtic boss could be interested in coming back down to England, having managed both Liverpool and Swansea in the Premier League previously. This season has been a difficult one for Northern Irish manager and reports indicate a breakdown in his relationship with the chairman Peter Lawwell. Rodgers has unfinished business back in England after Liverpool sacked him. Although it remains to be seen whether he will want to swap winning every trophy in Scotland for trying to get Joselu to actually score a goal.
Having managed Newcastle’s great rivals in Sunderland, the Scotsman could be seen as an outside bet for the manager’s job. On the other hand, the owner is not known to worry about the supporters’ views when making decisions. Moyes has experience in working under difficult owners especially at Everton. The funds were tight and unknown European players were signed and sold on for a profit. Something that has been Newcastle’s transfer policy under Mike Ashley.
After being sacked by Southampton, life has been quiet for Mark Hughes. The Welshman is in the running for any job that comes up, but never as one of the favourites. He seems to be the manager that teams turn to if they can’t get their other targets. He would be an underwhelming choice for the Newcastle fans however, he knows how to keep a team in the Premier League. This is the one rule at Newcastle, so this would definitely be noticed by Ashley.
The German left Huddersfield in the New Year and is taking time out of football, but could he be convinced to come back after 6 months out? Wagner did very well at the Terriers in order to get them promoted and then stay in the Premier League. Huddersfield had one of the smallest budgets in world football, which will be recognised by Newcastle’s tight owner.
With one year left on the 8 year contract extension that was signed at Newcastle in 2012, bringing Alan Pardew back to the club wouldn’t be the most unthinkable thing that Mike Ashley has done. An ability to bend to the owner’s will, the Englishman will be seen as a preferred candidate by the board. Even more preferred than bring Joe Kinnear back for the third time…
Vote on who you would choose in the below poll.
— Christopher Hatton (@Hattonchicken) 29 January 2019