Guillem Balague's verdict on whether Benitez will stay if Newcastle are relegated

St James Park Two

The Spaniard has been discussing the Newcastle boss's future.

Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez may be deciding his next career move if the club get relegated this summer, according to the Chronicle.

Indeed, Spanish football pundit Guillem Balague thinks Rafa could look for another top European club if he can't keep Newcastle up this season.

He isn't sure what the coach is thinking, of course, but insists it will be 'difficult' to keep him at St James' Park in the Championship.

And Balague told the Chronicle: "If I was him, I would do my best to think about the next step in his career, and I imagine that’s what he would do as well.

"Having been at Real Madrid, one of the top club’s in Europe, I think he’ll start to look for the same - so it might be difficult for Newcastle to keep him in the Championship.

"But I don’t know what he will do, I really don’t."

Considering the options that could be out there for Benitez this summer - most of which will be big, top-flight clubs - no one would blame the Spaniard for leaving the Magpies once they are relegated.

That's why Newcastle's future truly hinges on them staying up. Should they go down and Benitez leave, Mike Ashley's track record of hiring managers leaves plenty to be desired.

Another John Carver or Steve McClaren and Newcastle could be in big trouble in the Championship.

Next up for the Tyneside outfit is a trip to Benitez's former club Liverpool.

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