Rafa Benitez admits he might NOT be able to strengthen his Newcastle squad in January

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez
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Rafa Benitez admits he could be left with NOTHING to spend in January.

Newcastle United were beaten 4-1 by Manchester United on Saturday.

The result, the club’s third successive defeat, left Benitez’s side 11th in the Premier League ahead of Saturday’s home game against Watford.

Benitez hopes to be able to strengthen his squad in January’s transfer window.

However, with the club up for sale, Newcastle’s manager doesn’t know if he will have any money to spend in the New Year.

If a takeover is completed in time, Benitez could be given substantial funds.

I’ll keep working until January as hard as I can to improve my players, and if we can do something, we will. If not, I’ll try to improve the players that are available to me.

Rafa Benitez

And it is unclear if owner Mike Ashley will be prepared to commit money to squad strengthening if he is still owner when the window opens.

“I don’t know what will happen (in January),” said Benitez, who missed out on a series of targets in the summer window.

“I’ll keep working until January as hard as I can to improve my players, and if we can do something, we will.

“If not, I’ll try to improve the players that are available to me.”

Benitez and Steve Nickson, Newcastle’s head of recruitment, have been drawing up lists of potential targets.

The pair have been identifying targets in different price brackets ahead of January.

Meanwhile, Newcastle took the lead against Man United through a Dwight Gayle goal.

But the home side, driven on by £89million midfielder Paul Pogba, fought back strongly and scored two goals in each half.

“We did really well, but when you play against a normal team, maybe you can make mistakes and get away with them,” said Benitez.

“When you play against a top team, you know you will get punished.

“When we conceded the third goal and the fourth goal, you could see the quality that they have.

“The point for us is that for the first 30 minutes, we were doing a great job as a team and everybody had the right belief and intensity. To concede the second goal made it very difficult to manage.”