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Newcastle United confident of keeping Rafael Benitez

Newcastle United are reportedly confident of keeping Rafael Benitez at the club despite rumours linking the Spaniard to a departure from St James’ Park.

Benitez, who has disagreed with Magpies owner Mike Ashley over player transfer issues in the past, is believed to be one of the leading candidates to succeed David Moyes at West Ham United.

Hammers co-owner David Sullivan said in a statement on Thursday that the East London club was “very close” to appointing “a manager who has a proven record of success at the highest level of the game”.

According to Sky Sports News, however, Newcastle believe that they have a watertight contract with Benitez, which includes a large release clause, and are confident of seeing off any prospective suitors.

The Spaniard has managed some of the biggest football clubs in the world including Liverpool, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Inter Milan.

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