Replacing Newcastle manager Steve McClaren with Rafa Benitez will be a case of too little, too late for the Magpies.
That is according to the latest odds from Ladbrokes, which suggest that while Rafa’s appointment is a foregone conclusion the former Liverpool and Real Madrid gaffer will be unable to halt the St James’ Park side’s slide back into the Championship.
The bookmaker has priced Rafa replacing McClaren before the end of the season at 1/4 and it’s just 2/1 that the Spaniard takes charge before Monday night’s trip to the King Power Stadium to take on league leaders Leicester.
Rafa’s chances of keeping the Toon in the Premier League look slim. It’s 6/4 for the 55-year-old to take the Tyneside hotseat and keep them up but relegation appears a much more likely result at odds of 4/9.
However, Newcastle fans’ firm belief that their club remains one of the biggest powers in British football could mean the 12/1 that Rafa delivers some silverware in the 2016-17 season is the more tempting price.
Commenting on Rafa’s potential appointment and his chances of beating the drop a Ladbrokes spokesman said: “We fully expect Rafa to replace the Wally with the Brolly in the next few days but we’re less convinced about his ability to retain Newcastle’s top flight status.”
Ladbrokes latest betting
To be named NUFC manager before Monday 2/1
To be named NUFC manager before end of season 1/4
To keep NUFC up 6/4
To go down with NUFC 4/9
To win a trophy with NUFC in 2016-17 12/1
All odds and markets correct as of the date of publishing.