By Danny Wright

15th Aug, 2017 | 9:49am

Given hears astonishing claim about Benitez and Ashley relationship at Newcastle

By Danny Wright

Newcastle icon Shay Given has revealed he has been told that Rafa Benitez and Mike Ashley have not been in contact with each other for months.

The Magpies manager has recently made his frustrations clear about being unable to strengthen his squad anywhere near as much as he hoped to this summer despite owner Ashley promising him his full financial backing following promotion from the Championship.

And former Toon goalkeeper Given, 41, has said that he is hearing from the club that astonishingly the pair’s relationship is at the point where they are not communicating with one another.

“People up there have told me that Mike Ashley and Rafa Benitez haven’t spoken [to each other] for months,” said the former Republic of Ireland international on TalkSport, as shown on Alan Brazil’s Sports Breakfast’s official Twitter account on Tuesday morning.

“You just wonder how that’s going to end or for how that’s even possible.

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“You would still think there was some sort of relationship formed with the two of them.”

Ashley has recently admitted that Benitez isn’t getting enough money to help get his squad up to the standards of Premier League football as the club simply isn’t generating enough income despite winning the Championship title last term.

Christian Atsu, Florian Lejeune, Javier Manquillo and Jacob Murphy have been Newcastle’s only buys so far this summer with Mikel Merino moving from Borussia Dortmund on loan.

The Magpies got their season off to a poor start on Sunday when they were beaten 2-0 by title-contenders Tottenham after being reduced to 10 men following Jonjo Shelvey’s stamp on Dele Alli.

In other Newcastle news, an agent has confirmed that this goalkeeper’s transfer to St. James’ Park is on the cards.

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