Rafa Benitez reacts during a Newcastle match. Photo: Facundo Arrizabalaga/BackpagePix

NEWCASTLE - Rafa Benitez has warned Newcastle he "cannot do miracles every year" and urged the club to match his ambition to "win trophies".

Benitez takes his improving team to Goodison Park on Monday night having closed the gap on Everton to one point, with a game in hand.

That means mid-table safety, which is not enough to keep their Spanish manager happy.

Asked if he needs to know what owner Mike Ashley’s plans are for the club before committing his future, Benitez said: "The main thing is to be sure we share the same ambition. I like to win, I want to win trophies and I want to be capable of competing." 

"At the same time, I like to improve players, follow a realistic business plan in modern football. ‘I have no problem with that because I did it in the past. We have to be sure to have all the tools to compete and achieve what we want, because Newcastle are a massive football club.

"To be in the top four, to win trophies, to win the league, that is what I want to do - it’s not just survival or mid-table. We are going in the right direction, but I cannot do miracles every year."

Sam Allardyce does not enjoy the same lofty status at Everton and is still trying to convince doubters he should be in charge next season.

Indeed he claims such was the ‘chaos’ when he was appointed at the end of November that caretaker David Unsworth "could not wait for the new manager to be appointed. He was saying, 'Get me out of this position, get a new manager'."

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