Newcastle manager Benitez: I turned down offers from bigger clubs

Rafa Benitez Newcastle 2018-19
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The Magpies boss says he's had offers from other clubs, but feels he still has work to do on Tyneside

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez says he's turned down approaches from bigger clubs to remain with the Magpies. 

Benitez guided Newcastle to an impressive 10th-place finish last season, with club ownership consistently refusing to invest heavily in the transfer market. 

The Magpies have had a more difficult campaign this time around and sit in 15th place, two points above the drop zone. 

Newcastle have yet to bring in any reinforcements in January, as fans continue to demand more investment at St James' Park.

Despite presiding over a threadbare squad, the former Liverpool and Real Madrid manager said he has rejected approaches from bigger clubs. 

"I had teams, agents, talking with more money than here," Benitez said ahead of Saturday's match with Chelsea, another of his former clubs. 

"When I say more money, more money than here. But still I want to do something here, I want to stay in England.

"I'm close to my family, the fans have been fantastic, so you try to do something properly.

"Yes it's a risk but it's a challenge and I will try to do my best to win every single game."

Benitez is well aware of the spending disparity between Newcastle and other Premier League sides, and admits his side aren't able to shoot for European places because of it. 

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"The reality is that we have to compete in a division when we cannot compete against Bournemouth, who are spending money," the 58-year-old said.

"Forget about the top six, we have to compete against the others and we have to be realistic.

"That doesn't mean you are negative. Realistic, because you have the experience."