Next Newcastle manager: Sam Allardyce says he has turned down chance to replace Rafa Benitez

The former England boss, who held the position at St James' Park from 2007 until 2008, was under consideration to replace Rafael Benitez, who left the club at the end of June

Thursday 11 July 2019 07:29
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Rafael Benitez set to leave Newcastle United after failure to agree new contract

Sam Allardyce has revealed he turned down the chance to take the vacant manager’s job at Newcastle.

The former England boss, who held the position at St James’ Park from 2007 until 2008, was under consideration to replace Rafael Benitez, who left the club at the end of June.

However, Allardyce told talkSPORT: “I was very flattered that I was considered but it’s that thing... ‘don’t go back’. It never got to the type of talks people are suggesting but it wasn’t for me. I politely said ‘no’.

“I never got to talk to Mike (Ashley, owner of the club). My agent contacted me, I had a think about it and a quick look at the situation and thanked them very much.

“it’s not for me. Maybe if it was the first time around I would have jumped at it. I appreciate the offer but I was surprised, I’ve not worked for a full season.”

Allardyce continued: “’It wasn’t something I thought about for too long. I thought it’d be better to make a quick decision for everyone. We’re in pre-season now and they’re back in training.”

PA understands that another former Sunderland manager, Steve Bruce, is the man at the top of the Magpies’ shortlist and that formal contact with the 58-year-old Sheffield Wednesday boss is imminent.

Allardyce believes Bruce would love to be offered the position, adding: “If he gets offered the job I’ll think he’ll jump at the chance. I think it would be one of his dreams to manage his hometown club.”

On his previous stint on Tyneside, Allardyce explained: “It wasn’t pleasant in the end but it was in the middle of the takeover.

“I had a fabulous start but we were desperate for better players. I was trying to forge forward and they wanted to go in another direction and I have no problems with that. It was handled brilliantly by Mike and his staff at the time.

“The fans are a bit more tolerant now. They were very good with Rafa because there’s not as much money as other clubs have got and were a bit more patient.

“The transfer market is the hardest part of the job at the moment and getting the right players to go to Newcastle, listening to what Rafa said before, has been a tough job.”

Allardyce is not ruling out a return to Premier League management but maintains the job has to be right for him.

The 64-year-old, whose last top-flight job – at Everton – ended in May 2018, added: “I wouldn’t rule it out but the offer that attracts me may not come now. Before I’d (be) ‘I’ll come and try to save you, can I do something here, yeah, let’s go’.

“But what happened at Everton really did disappoint me. This was supposed to be taking the club forward and I never got that chance – and that still rankles with me.”

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