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Ayoze Perez: 'Newcastle United have to look after Rafael Benitez'

Perez: 'Newcastle have to look after Benitez'
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Newcastle United attacker Ayoze Perez fears that the club may lose Rafael Benitez if he is not given substantial backing in the transfer window.

Ayoze Perez has hailed Rafael Benitez's "great achievement" of guiding Newcastle United to a top-half finish and has urged the club to back the manager financially.

Benitez is unhappy with the lack of funds afforded to him since taking charge two years ago, particularly in the last two transfer windows - Jacob Murphy, at £11m from Norwich City, being their biggest arrival since returning to the top flight.

Three years after missing out on the Spaniard, West Ham United could now offer Benitez a route out of St James' Park as they seek a replacement for David Moyes.

Toon forward Perez, who enjoyed a strong end to the 2017-18 campaign, hopes that the boardroom unrest is resolved soon or Newcastle risk losing their popular manager.

"Rafa is key for our future," he is quoted as saying by Chronicle Live. "He made us reach this position of 10th in the table, just one year after going up, so it is a great achievement with the squad we've got.

"We have to look after him, take him seriously and listen to what he wants, and hopefully we can keep him here."

Benitez has reportedly been given a budget of £80m by owner Mike Ashley, who has thanked the former Real Madrid and Napoli boss for his work since arriving.

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Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez reacts during his side's Premier League clash with Liverpool at St James' Park on October 1, 2017
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