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Newcastle could turn to Rafa Benitez

HITC Sport understands that Spaniard would consider replacing Steve McClaren.

Rafa Benitez could answer an SOS from Newcastle United, if they decide to sack Steve McClaren, HITC Sport understands.

The former Liverpool boss is currently living back in the UK, following his departure from Real Madrid at the beginning of January.

The 55-year-old, who last spell in England was with Chelsea in 2013 when he guided them to Europa League success, is keen to remain in this country but there are few jobs that appeal to him or that he would be considered for.

But Newcastle are aware that Benitez could be tempted to Tyneside - even if only for a temporary spell - and are ready to make a move for him, if McClaren fails to turnaround their season and defeat to Bournemouth this Saturday could see him removed from the St James' hot-seat.

The Magpies - who have spent £80million on new players since McClaren's arrival - are currently entrenched in the relegation mire and sit second from bottom, with just six wins all season.

Newcastle insiders have been considering McClaren's position for a number of weeks and managing director Lee Charnley is understood to have assembled a hit-list which is understood to include former Roma boss Rudi Garcia.

But with Benitez's Premier League knowledge, and the fact he is already based in the North of England, makes him an appealing option - should he be required.

Last month HITC Sport revealed that the pressure was mounting on McClaren and results since have not improved.

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