Newcastle United are aiming to unveil their new manager during the upcoming international break – and a new favourite has emerged to take the job.
Steve Bruce recently parted company with the club in the first major decision made by their new owners. The promise of long-term success makes Newcastle an appealing destination for several candidates, as long as they acknowledge the side’s current predicament.
Plenty of coaches seem to be intrigued by the prospect of leading Newcastle into a new era. Paulo Fonseca was a frontrunner for the job and had a plan to make five transformative signings in January.
He was then overtaken in the owners’ order of preference by Lucien Favre, who was said to find the job an “enticing” proposition.
Caretaker boss Graeme Jones was initially told he would be overseeing two matches in charge. Those have now passed, meaning an appointment should in theory be close.
But Newcastle are not rushing into a decision and it now seems Jones will lead them into the international break. Then they will make their move for a new permanent boss.
According to Sport1, the new favourite to take charge of Newcastle is Unai Emery.
Emery has previous in the Premier League, where he used to manage Arsenal. After leaving them in 2019, he waited a year before landing in his next job with Villarreal.
The Spaniard guided the Yellow Submarine to Europa League glory last season after they beat Manchester United on penalties in the final.
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Villarreal still have him under contract until 2023, but according to Sport1, Newcastle are “keen to pay a huge transfer fee” to free him up.
Their target is to have him in place during the international break so he can begin planning their rebuild.
Unai Emery under pressure at Villarreal
Newcastle have no wins from their opening 10 Premier League games, so require a big turnaround. Finding the right coach is the first step of their long-term plan to become a major force again.
Emery would be leaving Villarreal in midtable after their own tricky start to the season. They are 13th in La Liga after winning just two of their opening 11 games. As such, Emery is coming under a bit of pressure.
But the coach has enjoyed plenty of success in the not-too-distant past. Therefore, Newcastle believe he could be the right man to take them forwards.
And it does not seem they are willing to wait to see if he will be sacked by Villarreal. Instead, they are preparing to pay to secure his services.
During his previous job in England with Arsenal, he earned 1.85 points-per-match from 78 games after succeeding Arsene Wenger. His win rate was 55.1 per cent.
Prior to that, he managed Paris Saint-Germain between 2016 and 2018, winning one Ligue 1 title and six other trophies.
He is most famous for his success in the Europa League, though, which he won in three consecutive seasons with Sevilla earlier in his career and lifted again with Villarreal last season.