Rafa Benitez has entered the final week of his contract at Newcastle, and still no official word has been heard from either party.

The result is a lot of rumour and speculation, as conflicting reports emerge about what will happen next at St James’ Park.

The Chronicle claim that Newcastle’s hierarchy will make a “last-ditch attempt” to reach a deal with the Spaniard, while the Daily Mail insist there is little prospect for new negotiations to take place.

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Most Toon fans would take the word of their regional reporters over that of a national journalist, and will hope that emergency talks will find a resolution.

If talks do take place at the request of Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley, then it would likely mean they are willing to concede ground on the terms they have put to Benitez previously.

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Whether that is to relax their transfer age blueprint, and allow him more direct say on which players to bring in, or if they will agree to his hopes for upgrading training facilities, or any of his key demands, it can only be a positive sign.

This week will show just how much Newcastle United want Rafa to stay

If they genuinely do want him to stay, and are willing to offer him further leeway, then it could be seen as Rafa having played the situation – and the club – perfectly.

(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

Benitez has been adamant about what he wants and needs, and has stood firm, and silent, on what he sees as vital to take the club forward.

If he has managed to get the power people at St James’ Park to blink first and change their stance, then it will be seen as a masterstroke by the Spanish maestro.

Let’s hope, for the sake of the club we love so much, that it results in a new deal for Rafa, and we can all move forward together.

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