Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez has urged the club’s fans to show support for the players, but made the shock warning that they need to prepare for a relegation battle this season.
Saturday’s 3-0 home defeat to Watford has seen the club fall to 14th place in the Premier League table, ahead of tonight’s trip to managerless West Brom.
The club have now lost their last four Premier League matches, but Benitez has warned fans that their season could get worse if the proposed takeover of the club is not completed by the time the January transfer window opens.
British business women Amanda Staveley has been in talks with club owner Mike Ashley over a potential takeover for the past few weeks.
Benitez admitted that Newcastle do not have the funds to compete with their Premier League rivals and is worried that he will not be able to improve his squad in January if the potential takeover does not materialise.
“You can lose against the top teams, we have to compete against Huddersfield, Brighton or Burnley, but we couldn’t sign players that they signed,” said Benitez, as quoted by the Daily Mail.
The Newcastle boss urged the club’s fans to support the current group of players and said that they must face the reality that the club is in a relegation battle.
“The reality is that we have a team which has to compete at the bottom of the table. That is a message for our fans – we have to support our team, we have to support our players, so stick together.”
Benitez will be hoping his squad can return to winning ways tonight before Saturday’s trip to Premier League champions Chelsea.
In other Newcastle United news, a report has revealed the latest details of the Magpies’ pursuit of this £20m striker.