Boss still in dark over January budget

Boss still in dark over January budget

Speaking last month, Benitez said: "I have confidence that Mike Ashley will deliver what we need to stay in the Premier League before January 20, to be sure that we have time to work with the new players".

"We have a lot of people working, talking to agents, giving us names and options". I am hopeful we will do something.

We know Benitez would like a striker, a winger, a No 10, a left-back and a goalkeeper.

"If Rafa thinks he has it hard, then he should probably ask Carvalhal what he is thinking at the moment".

"Whatever happens, we will still be missing something in certain positions and that is why we are trying to bring players in".

"As soon as I found out Newcastle were interested, there was only one place to go, but obviously I don't want to see them go down, because I want to play against them and I have mates in their team", said Shelvey, signed in January 2016 for £12million. That might well limit Benitez's ability to make signings of his own this month, but the Magpies manager appears to have concluded that the risk of losing someone without being able to adequately replace them is too great. "A massive game for them, a massive game for us". But if they talk about loans we are not interested because we need them. "We will try to do our best until the last day and believe we will do what we have to do".

Reports yesterday suggested a Dubai-based group have also expressed an interest in buying out Ashley, but given that they have not even begun a formal process of due diligence, if they do harbour any serious ambitions of mounting a takeover, they are at an extremely formative stage.

We also know he's unlikely to get what he wants.

Benitez has discussed his ideas with Ashley and Charnley.

The 13th-placed club is yet to sign a player in this month's window.