Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez says owner Mike Ashley can attend training whenever he wants
Last Updated: 01/09/18 5:43pm
Rafael Benitez has told Newcastle owner Mike Ashley he needs no invitation to the club's training ground.
A report on Friday suggested Ashley was unhappy that he had not been invited to the training ground by the manager, but Benitez insists he is welcome any time.
The Spaniard, who generally communicates with Ashley via the club's managing director Lee Charnley, said: "It is not an issue [for me]. Mike Ashley is the owner and he is welcome here when he wants to come, that's it."
Pressed on whether he would issue an invitation to the sportswear magnate, Benitez added: "Are you married? Yes. You have a house? Yes. So do you have to be invited into your own house?
"You are the owner, so you can do what you want. You are the owner, you are welcome."
The strong-minded pair appear to be at an impasse, with Ashley unwilling to sanction significant summer spending without Benitez agreeing a contract extension, and the Spaniard not prepared to do so without being given evidence of the club's ambition.
The owner is understood to have grown weary of the manager's barely-disguised dissatisfaction with the club's latest recruitment mission, and that has not helped their arm's length relationship.
However, asked if a rapprochement was a possibility before, as the club's fans fear, a parting of the ways when his contract expires at the end of June next year, Benitez said: "It is too early. We have plenty of time to discuss things, Don't worry."
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