July 22, 2019
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Rafa Benítez to leave Newcastle United

 Newcastle coach Rafa Benitez reacts during the English Premier league game between Arsenal and Newcastle United at the Emirates stadium in London, Britain, Dec. 16, 2017. EPA-EFE FILE/FACUNDO ARRIZABALAGA

Newcastle coach Rafa Benitez reacts during the English Premier league game between Arsenal and Newcastle United at the Emirates stadium in London, Britain, Dec. 16, 2017. EPA-EFE FILE/FACUNDO ARRIZABALAGA

London, Jun 24 (efe-epa).- Newcastle has parted ways with Spanish coach Rafael Benitez, the Premier League side announced on Monday.

“We have worked hard to extend Rafa’s contract over a significant period of time, however it has not been - and will not be - possible to reach an agreement with Rafa and his representatives,” Newcastle said in a statement.

Benitez's contract is due to expire on June 30 after two and half seasons at the helm of the club.

“Rafa’s coaching staff, Paco de Míguel Moreno, Antonio Gómez Pérez and Mikel Antia, will also leave the club on 30th June,” the club added.

Benitez joined Newcastle after a seven-month stint at Real Madrid in 2016.

He was landed with a sinking in March 2016 as the team from northeast England struggled to leave 19th place, the second last place in the table.

The team went down to the Championship but under the continued management of Benitez came straight back up to the top-flight, where it finished 10th that season.

The team finished 13th in its most recent campaign.

During his period in charge, Newcastle played 146 matches, with a ratio of 62 wins to 31 draws and 53 defeats, scoring 209 goals and conceding 171.

“We would like to thank Rafa and his coaching team for their efforts over the last three years and their significant contribution to what has been collectively achieved,” the club added in the statement.

Newcastle was the 12th club Benitez has led since his coaching career got underway in 1993 when he coached Real Madrid B.

Benitez, however, is widely known for the 2005 UEFA Champions League final, when he steered Liverpool to win the title at the expense of AC Milan.

In his first season at the helm of Liverpool, Benitez emerged victorious in one of the most exciting Champions League finals in the recent memory when his team rallied from a 3-0 deficit to draw level at 3-3 and then won on a penalty shootout.

Beside this Champions League trophy, Benitez’s silverware include an English FA Cup, UEFA Super Cup and English Super Cup with Liverpool, a Europa League title with Chelsea, a FIFA Club World Cup and an Italian Super Cup with FC Internazionale and two La Liga titles with Valencia among others. EFE

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