Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez looks on from the touchline

By Aramide Oladipo

Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez has admitted that the hard work is only just starting for the Magpies – and that the club faces a tough summer as the manager tries to assemble a squad worthy of the Premier League.

Newcastle fans will have been delighted to hear the news that the Spaniard has decided to stay at the club and lead them into the Premier League next season.

Following a disastrous spell at Spanish giants Real Madrid, Benitez joined Newcastle just before the end of the 2015/16 season but he couldn’t prevent them from being relegated for the first time in 7 years.

The Spaniard stayed on and led Newcastle back to the Premier League at the first attempt and they return as champions following a 3-0 victory against Barnsley at St James’ Park on the final day of the season.

After confirming that he’ll stay at the club for the following campaign, Benitez spoke to the club’s official website and asked for calm ahead of next season.

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“I’m pleased with how the meeting went and the positive approach we are all taking together to build on what we have started this season.” he said.

He added: “There will be challenges ahead of course, the summer will not be easy, but the hard work has been going on for some time and we can now continue positively with the development of the squad ahead of the start of the new season.”

This will be the Spaniard’s seventh full season working in the Premier League following his spell in Merseyside where he managed Liverpool for five years.

Newcastle were last promoted back to the top flight in the 2010/11 season and they managed to secure a 12th place finish and this will surely be Benitez’ target for next season.

In other Newcastle news, the Magpies are tipped to sign this 28-year-old striker.

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