By Coral Barry

Rafael Benitez is in line to earn £4million a year as Newcastle manager, according to reports.

The 55-year-old is on the verge of being announced as the successor to Steve McClaren at St James’ Park.

The club will axe McClaren after a disastrous run of results that has left Newcastle second from the bottom of the Premier League table.

Football Insider revealed that Benitez is set to be given a three-year deal and will be in charge in time for Newcastle’s clash with league leaders Leicester on Monday.

The Mirror are now reporting that Benitez’s contract will be worth £4million a year.

That is four times McClaren’s £1million-a-year deal and is a hefty commitment from a club who could be competing in the Championship next season.

Dark days: McClaren is struggling to turn around Newcastle situation

Dead man walking: McClaren is set to be shown the door once Benitez’s signature is won

After three successive league losses, Newcastle have 24 points but are still just two points from safety with ten games left to play.

In other Newcastle news, it is alleged that money might not be the only thing the Magpies will have to part with when Benitez arrives.