Is Rafa Benitez fortunate to avoid more criticism at Newcastle United?
The Magpies have endured a dismal start to the Premier League season, failing to win any of their first eight games with only Cardiff City below them as things stand.
But, for the most part, Benitez has got away almost scot-free with much of the criticism levelled at owner Mike Ashley, whose lack of investment in the transfer market has certainly made his manager’s position difficult.
Though speaking to The Final Word on talkSPORT (14 October, 6pm), Simon Jordan believes that questions should be asked of the popular Spaniard – and has warned Newcastle fans against handing Benitez Messiah-esque status on Tyneside.
“It is difficult to defend the indefensible. I have mixed emotions,” former Crystal Palace chairman Jordan said. “I know that he walks on water, I know that they see him as the second coming. I don’t see him that way.
“Rafa Benitez is about Rafa Benitez and if there is an opportunity for him to advance himself, something that he thinks is better than Newcastle, then he’ll be out the door and leave behind these adoring fans.
“I believe Newcastle are a stepping stone for him.”
Benitez himself, however, has suggested that he wants to build a dynasty at St James’ Park and has no interest in using the side as a means of kick-starting his career after that reputation-battering spell at Real Madrid.
As reported by The Chronicle in April, the former Chelsea and Liverpool boss claimed that he would be happy to stay at Newcastle for 10 years – if he was backed sufficiently from above.
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