Italian legend favourite to land Newcastle Utd job if Rafa Benitez exits

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With Rafa Benitez set to see his current Newcastle Utd contract expire this summer, speculation is building over who will replace him.

The Spaniard has led the Magpies well clear of the relegation zone and pushing for a respectable mid-table finish in the Premier League this season.

SEE MORE: ‘I wish I could stay longer’ – Newcastle Utd ace eager to extend stay with club

However, given his glittering managerial career and ambition to win things, he’ll want reinforcements this summer to boost Newcastle’s chances of kicking on and climbing the standings.

According to talkSPORT, it’s more likely that the two parties split this summer, and current AC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso has been installed as favourite to land the job.

It’s questionable as to whether Newcastle would be making a sensible decision though, as while he has enjoyed his moments in charge of the Italian giants, the World Cup winner has struggled to get them into the top four in Serie A this season.

In fact, they have it all to do if they are to qualify for the Champions League next season, and if they fail to do so, it would come as no surprise if Gattuso was sacked.

That in turn could be a boost for Newcastle though as he would be available, and it’s suggested in the report above that the Italian legend is ahead of the likes of Nigel Pearson, Michael Laudrup, Slaven Bilic and Eddie Howe as the favourite for the Newcastle job with the bookmakers.

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