It may come as a surprise to fans of other football clubs that Newcastle United actually had the lowest net spend in the Championship this season. Yes, there were a few players signed for eight-figure fees (Matt Ritchie cost £12 million from Bournemouth, whilst Dwight Gayle commanded a £10 million price tag when he was brought in from Crystal Palace), but there were also several key players sold for massive amounts. Moussa Sissoko and Gini Wijnaldum alone generated close to £60 million due to their respective sales. Add to that Daryl Janmaat and Andros Townsend and that takes you closer to £80 million.
After doing exactly what he set out to do this season, Benitez is in a position of power, and Ashley will know that better than anyone. The club simply have to back their wonderful Spanish manager and give him the keys to the kingdom. It really is that simple. Without him, promotion would have been a pipe dream for a club that was utterly broken before his arrival.
Amidst the drama and celebrations, it has emerged via AS Sport in Spain that the former Liverpool and Chelsea manager had appeared on Cadena SER's late night football radio show, offering up some interesting comments:
"Here (in England) one is valued and respected for ones work and there are no backroom politics, unlike at other places".
Of course, that may upset a particular set of fans in his hometown, but more importantly, it alludes to the fact that Mr. Ashley is not actually meddling with “football business”.
Something that will please supporters further is that according the same report, Benitez himself revealed that significant spending would be required, and claimed that the Newcastle owner has set a budget of 82 million euros, which equates to £70 million.
If that is the case, then nobody can really complain, especially considering that money made off of sales will also likely be made available.
Everybody associated with Newcastle United football club seem to all finally be pulling together and in the same direction. Hopefully, this is the beginning of something special and the good times can return to St James’ Park, finally. One thing is for sure, there is no better man to take us forward. Not one.
Although, he did refuse to rule anything out at the same time, stating:
"One never knows what lies around the corner, that's the way football is".