By Russell Edge
Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez could be handed a transfer budget of £500million for the next two seasons if Amanda Staveley completes a takeover of the club, according to a report.
The Sunday Express claim on their website, as well as on their back page, that the international financier is willing to back the Spanish manager with half-a-billion pounds worth of investment in the first two seasons at the club, after she has secured a £300million takeover.
The report states that the stunning financial commitment from the British businesswoman, who fronts PCP Capital Partners, would be made over two transfer windows to try and turn the Magpies into title contenders.
The newspaper also suggest that Newcastle could look to reignite a shock move for former winger Andros Townsend, who is said to be rated in the region of £30million, having seen a transfer fall through over the summer.
He left the club after their relegation in 2016, joining Crystal Palace in a £14million deal.
The 26-year-old made 13 appearances and scored four goals during his half a season on Tyneside, and endured an unhappy return to St James’ Park with the Eagles as they suffered a 1-0 defeat on Saturday thanks to a late Mikel Merino goal.
Football Insider verdict
Newcastle United’s takeover saga is going to be the biggest talking point on Tyneside until it actually happens, and then attentions will turn to the transfer market. £500million is an astounding amount of money and is probably more than fans would have ever expected. They certainly are not expecting to be title challengers after a takeover, but if that is Staveley’s desire then there are likely to be few complaints. They have the base for a push up the Premier League table, with outstanding support and a world class manager in Benitez, and such a transfer budget would be an serious show of faith in the Spaniard. However supporters must take such reports with a pinch of salt, and the suggestion of a £30million return for Andros Townsend is just absurd. A non-starter really.