By Wayne Veysey

28th Apr, 2017 | 4:27pm

Report: This is the number of players Benitez will tell Ashley Newcastle must sign this summer

By Harry Sykes

Rafael Benitez will tell Newcastle owner Mike Ashley that the club must sign eight new players this summer, according to a report.

The Guardian claim the Magpies manager has a firm idea of what is needed as plans are put in place to strengthen the squad ahead of the club’s return to the Premier League.

Benitez has revealed he will hold detailed talks with Ashley in the next 10 days about his own future as well as the players he manages and wants to bring in.

The Guardian report that the former Liverpool and Real Madrid boss will present Ashley with detailed business plans he has already drawn up for next season stipulating that he “would, ideally, like to sign around eight new players”.

The Champions League-winning manager is keen to remain in the St James’ Park dugout but wants reassurances about his transfer budget and powerbase before staying on.

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“I will have a meeting with him in the coming days,” Benitez said, as quoted by the Guardian. “We will discuss the future of the club, the future of myself and everything.

“I am quite confident everything will be fine but I need to talk to Mike and whether I’m optimistic depends on how things go. At the moment I’m quite happy. We will do our best to make sure we have a competitive team next season.

“How much money have we to spend? What can we do if we sell players? Which players will stay, which players will leave? I’m not the kind of manager saying ‘I want this and that is it’, I will try and argue why we need this.

“Now we have to sit down and discuss everything. I will give him my ideas and explanations. My vision of the club’s potential. He wants to win and if we win trophies it is always positive.”

Newcastle secured instant promotion to the Premier League on Monday night with a 4-1 win against Preston on what was a memorable evening.

In other Newcastle United transfer news, a brilliant text about Moussa Sissoko has been circulated among the club’s staff after Wednesday’s HMRC raid.

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