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Benitez insists ‘clever’ fans know he’s committed to Newcastle

Rafael Benitez has said Newcastle’s ‘clever’ fans know he’s committed to the club.

The Newcastle manager has endured a strained relationship with owner Mike Ashley over the progress of the club, with Ashley having failed to significantly invest in the team in recent seasons.

The club made a profit in the summer transfer window, with Japanese forward Yoshinori Muto their most significant purchase at just £9.63m from German club Mainz.

Michael Owen remains the club’s record-signing at £16m, despite arriving in 2005, and some fans have been concerned the owner’s lack of ambition may see Benitez depart for a new challenge.

“I think our fans are quite clever.’’ Benitez told the press ahead of his sides home clash against Manchester United tomorrow.

“I decided to stay when I came here, and I thought we could save the team, but we couldn’t.

“I then decided to stay in the Championship, so they know about my past, about my history.

“They appreciate that, and then we won, which is football.

“Even if you have a good CV, you still have to win.

“And we did it – we won the Championship.”

Newcastle currently sit in 15th position in the Premier League table after 20 games.

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