Rafael Benitez has called the transfer market “crazy” as Newcastle United’s preparations for their Premier League return continue to go at a snails pace.
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Surely Newcastle won’t make the same mistakes they’ve made in the past.
Benitez, 57, spoke at a fan event in Newcastle and revealed that his side are struggling to bring in the players they would like to push on after gaining promotion from the Championship.
“It’s not easy for a lot of teams because the market is a little bit crazy. We have to try to do our best,” Benitez said. “The top sides have a lot of money. The other teams are spending too, but we will see what we can do. We know where we are – that is not ideal because everybody wants to see a lot of players signing already, but we have to keep working and see what we can do. We can do nothing other than just keep working to find the players that we want, and hopefully we can do it.”
The timing of this comment is clever from Benitez and the former Liverpool, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid manager has always been keen to push the owners and board as much as he can to get what he wants.
With Newcastle starting preseason, the Magpies boss is giving owner Mike Ashley a nudge to remind him that he needs backing in the transfer market before the new season kicks off on Aug. 12.
Benitez was given huge funds last season (Dwight Gayle, Mohamed Diame and Matt Ritchie all arrived) when Newcastle were in the second-tier after Benitez came in late during the 2015-16 campaign but couldn’t save them from relegation. For the past six months reports have popped up stating Benitez was unhappy with the lack of transfer funds available and it was thought he could walk away in May after guiding Newcastle back to the PL.
However, the club released a statement early in the summer stating that Benitez would be staying on and he commented on how happy he was with the transfer policy as the owner had promised every penny from promotion would be spent on the squad. Benitez obviously isn’t too happy with Newcastle’s transfer dealings right now (they missed out on signing the likes of Willy Caballero and Tammy Abraham) but there’s still over eight weeks left in the summer window to get deals done.
Christian Atsu has arrived on a permanent deal from Chelsea this summer, while defender Florian Lejeune arrived from Eibar but it’s been hard going apart from that. Yes, the likes of Gayle and Jonjo Shelvey provide Premier League experience and will be vital if Newcastle are to kick on and finish in the top half of the PL table as they hope to, but adding more quality is essential if Newcastle aren’t going to embroiled in yet another relegation battle.
Benitez knows that. Hence, these comments.