There was panic at Newcastle United this morning, all stemming from a shock decision from one of the big nations at this summer’s World Cup. Spain boss Julen Lopetegui was named as the successor to Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid yesterday afternoon. However, he did not inform the Spanish football federation who, subsequently, sacked him.
It leaves Spain without a manager ahead of the World Cup, with their first game against European champions Portugal on Friday evening.
One name that was immediately mentioned as a potential replacement, temporary or permanent, was Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez.
The Spaniard has long been linked with the Spanish national team role and in the past has not hidden his desire to one day lead his nation. With continued rumblings over his future at Newcastle, the fear was he might be off to save his country in their hour of need.
That would have left Newcastle desperately short in pre-season preparation and concerned he would become the manager of Spain permanently.
However, as reported by The Chronicle, the Newcastle boss apparently has no interest in the Spain job right now. They report he is happy in the UK and is not yet ready to turn his back on club management.
Newcastle fans can now breathe a sigh of relief, as the Spaniard has worked wonders on a tight budget and with a limited squad at St James’ Park.
Losing him would be worse than losing many of their star players and the fact he is remaining has left Newcastle fans relieved…
— Matthew Milton (@LeafySeaDragon_) June 13, 2018
— Paul Lindsay (@1ChippyUK) June 13, 2018
Benitez might as well take over Spain for the next month. Nothings gonna happen at nufc anyway
— Daniel Webster (@Dan_Omegawebby) June 13, 2018
— Scott Wilson (@Scottwilsonecho) June 13, 2018
Mike Ashley gambled on the future of Newcastle United to get to the Premier league, and now what?
Would it not have been better to not put club at risk financially.
By not spending he is again risking relegation.
It’s a question of when, not if Rafa Benitez walks out of #NUFC
— Himanshu Dhingra (@HD_07) June 13, 2018
Wow something big must of gone down in the spanish camp for them to sack him couple days before the world cup! Benitez to take over and win the world cup then return to newcastle to win the prem?? ??? #spain #WorldCup2018 #skysportnews
— Gary (@garybcha) June 13, 2018
I agree completely. I think it would be a win win situation for NUFC and Rafa.
— Stephen Edward Graham (@StephenEdwardG4) June 13, 2018
— The Spectator’s View (@thespectoview) June 13, 2018