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Published: 10:56 | 23/4/16

Rafa eyes long-term Toon stay

Benitez has affection for 'city of workers'

Rafael Benitez is hoping to remain as Newcastle United's manager for 'some years' to come.

Benitez arrived on Tyneside last month on a three-year contract, tasked with saving the Magpies from relegation to the Championship.

The much-travelled coach has a clause in his contract that could see him leave Newcastle at the end of the current season, should the club drop out of the top flight, but the Spaniard has eyes on the future at St James' Park.

Ahead of Saturday's clash away to his former club, Liverpool, Benitez said: "I see the similarities between the cities and the fans. It's a city of workers - the fans support the team, they have passion, so they are very similar. That is good for me.

"I've been in Spain, I've been in Italy, but the experience of Liverpool was fantastic because the fans are behind you, no matter what you do.

"At the moment, the fans here, we are in honeymoon, everything is fine, and I am really pleased. Hopefully it can be the same for some years."

Newcastle lie in 19th place in the Premier League, a point behind North-East rivals Sunderland and two in arrears of 17th-placed Norwich City.

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