Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Italian papers make bizarre claim that Rafa Benitez will take charge at Chelsea 'imminently'

Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez's return to Chelsea for his second stint in charge of the club is 'imminent' according to a bizarre claim by Italian publication Tuttosport. 

They report that the Spaniard is ready to step in and take over from Juventus-bound Maurizio Sarri.  

Benitez's future at Newcastle is up in the air and he's yet to sign a new deal with the Magpies after steering them to Premier League safety again last term. 

The 59-year-old was never a popular figure with Chelsea fans when he took charge on an interim basis back in 2012-13. 

His Liverpool connections, where he always had a fierce rivalry with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, left plenty of supporters protesting his appointment. 

But the Spaniard helped the club win the Europa League during his short tenure and has been linked with a return.

Sportsmail understand that Benitez is not a candidate to succeed Sarri if the Italian returns to his homeland.

He remains in negotiations with Newcastle, who are currently in takeover talks with billionaire Sheik Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan.

The Sheik made a £350million offer for the club but there are doubts as Mike Ashley is yet to see proof of any of funds. 


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