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Rafa Benitez staying to inspire Newcastle back to the top

By Robert Jones

Rafa Benitez was unveiled as the manager of Newcastle for the second time and admitted he believes he can lead the club to promotion and then to a period of winning trophies.

The 56-year-old was considering his options after the Toon were relegated from the Premier League but has agreed a three-year contract and revealed he had been given assurances he will not have to sell anyone.

The former Liverpool boss has also been handed the title of manager and given full control of football matters.

"I am here because I am convinced we can go up next season, stay there for a long time and even win trophies," he said.

"The first reason for me to stay was the fans, the stature of the club and the future. I came here because of that and I could see them every day. My family is in England and I wanted to stay. My family said, 'You have to stay'."

Relegation is expected to cost Newcastle £40m. Big earners like Fabricio Coloccini, Papiss Cisse and Cheick Tiote are likely candidates to leave. The fight will be to hold onto players like Andros Townsend and Moussa Sissoko.

"We can bring players if we need them," Benitez added. "How much we have, that is for us, but we can also keep who we want."

Belfast Telegraph


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