Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez is carrying out an almost impossible job at St James’ Park when it comes to bringing safety and success to the club – and it is all courtesy of a lack of backing from owner Mike Ashley.
The Magpies chief has little to no interest in creating a side capable of any sort of success and he is quite happy to let the club float on down the stream without loosening the purse strings more than he has to, safe in the knowledge that he has a top class coach at the helm who will get the best out of bang average players.
With seven players through the door and some decent, if cut-price, transfer fees reported, Newcastle might consider themselves in an equal-to-stronger position than they were in last season.
However, serious questions must now be launched Ashley’s way after the Sun journalist Alan Nixon made a shock reveal about the club’s spending, stating that the club had actually splashed out less money than originally thought for Yoshinori Muto and Federico Fernandez.
While it is all well and good the club getting better value for money, the reportedly big money exit of Aleksandar Mitrovic coupled with the departures of Mikel Merino and Chancel Mbemba, should have seen cash in the bank for Benitez – so where has that money gone?
The easiest assumption is into Ashley’s pocket, and considering he has previously made promises about giving the manager every penny the club generates to spend, the question must be asked of the Sports Direct supremo.
Newcastle fans should be feeling disappointed about the way summer went, and with Ashley seemingly penny pinching once again, their ire will only rise up.