Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez could well leave the club after the Magpies failed to meet his assurances, with only 12 months left on his current deal.
The manager would be walking into the West Ham job, with the club keen to land the highly rated manager after seeing David Moyes depart the club, having led them to safety in the Premier League.
Moyes did what he was brought in to do, but both parties felt it would be better to move on, and the Hammers want to land Benitez, who is of course loved by Newcastle fans but doesn’t have a good relationship with Mike Ashley.
To take over as West Ham manager, Benitez reportedly wants a contract worth £6 million a year, and the guarantee he would have full control over transfers – and a massive £100 million kitty to spend as well according to the Express.
Should Benitez leave for West Ham, the club would have to pay the £6 million severance clause in his contract – though the Daily Mail claim Benitez thinks he could well avoid this, with Newcastle failing to keep promises made to him and the manager going as far as to claim he could have a case for constructive dismissal.
However, we have also learned they do not think the clause which states he must pay a year’s salary if he breaks his contract is an obstacle to leaving the club.
That is because they believe owner Mike Ashley has failed to keep promises made to the manager and could argue Benitez was left with no choice but to walk away from the deal, which has 12 months to run.
It is likely that any club — such as West Ham — would be willing to pay the £6m compensation and so avoid a tribunal process.