Former Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez has suggested that a loss of “trust” as a result “three years of unfulfilled promises” from the board led to his departure from St. James’ Park.
Benitez left the club when his contract expired at the end of June, having guided the budget-constrained Newcastle to a 13th-place finish last season.
The Magpies managing director Lee Charnley suggested over the weekend that the Spaniard left “for money”, but Benitez gave a fierce response to those claims, saying if that was the case, he “could have done it much earlier”.
“Newcastle’s board had a year to sort out my contract but, when we met after the end of last season, they didn’t make me an offer I could accept,” Benitez said in his column for The Athletic.
“They told me they didn’t want to invest in the academy or the training ground – if they like, I can explain the reason why Mike Ashley refused to do that. Their idea of a project was a policy of signing players under 24 and, in my opinion, the budget available was not enough to compete for the top 10.
“After that meeting, I knew they would not come back with a serious offer and, when it arrived, 19 days later, it was for the same salary as three years earlier and with less control over signings.
“After three years of unfulfilled promises, I didn’t trust them.”
Steve Bruce then took over from Benitez, the former losing his first match in charge of Newcastle against Arsenal on Sunday.