The 2018/19 campaign hasn’t started in the way most Newcastle fans thought it would. They came into this season believing their beloved team would once again establish themselves as a mid-table Premier League side with the ambition of going further.
Instead, the Magpies sit 14th in the table, one point above the relegation zone. At first, fans attributed this poor form to a lack of financial backing from owner Mike Ashley.
Now the fans have directed their frustration towards Rafa Benítez instead, as some of the team’s performances have been inexcusable. A lack of spending does not justify a -6-goal difference and only two wins in twelve games.
Either all the players leave in January or the manager gets fired, unfortunately, it’s always more economically viable to serve the coach his marching papers.
Here are three managers who could replace Rafa Benítez at Newcastle.
#3 Sam Allardyce
There isn’t a more experienced and seasoned Premier League manager in history than Sam Allardyce. The 64-year-old is currently taking a break from the stress of the game but a return home to Newcastle would revitalise his career.
Over the course of his managerial career, the Englishman has overseen over 965 games. It’s that pedigree of experience that the Magpies need to salvage their crisis of a season.
Big Sam’s first reign at St. James Park only lasted for 24 games as he became the first man to be sacked in the tyrannical reign of Mike Ashley.
#2 Julen Lopetegui
The recently embarrassed and fired Real Madrid manager is currently licking his wounds somewhere in Spain. The Spaniard has been fired from two jobs in the space of five months, surely that’s a record? That means the 40-year-old is looking for any and every opportunity to clear his name and where better to do so than in the most watched league in the world.
For Lopetegui, Newcastle is a redemption story waiting to happen. The Spaniard’s free-flowing style of play would transform Mike Ashley’s most valuable asset into an attractive proposition that could go toe to toe with the league’s best.
With players like Jonjo Shelvey, Matt Richie and Joselu and Jamaal Lascelles at St. James Park, the former Madrid manager will have enough players comfortable with the ball at their feet to implement his philosophy.
#1 Antonio Conte
Mauricio Pochettino may not agree but Antonio Conte revolutionised the Premier League with his 3-4-3. The Italian’s three at the back phenomenon took the league by storm and forced everyone to alter their tactics. Till this day we’re seeing his legacy in the league as Wolves have adapted his formation into a winning formula.
Antonio Conte wasn’t sacked from Chelsea because of his coaching ability, he was released because of his public differences with the board. He felt players were being bought on his behalf, players he never wanted in the first place.
If placed at a team where he doesn’t have to fight with the board, he will succeed. His record speaks itself, seven domestic trophies and title wins in every country he’s managed says it all.
At Newcastle, the 47-year-old will have a group of players that are hard-working, energetic and disciplined. These are the only three traits that an Antonio Conte team needs to do well.