By 90Min
December 14, 2017

Without a win since October 21, Newcastle are starting to find themselves in a real relegation battle. The club have been in the same position in five out of the past nine seasons, with the Magpies suffering relegation twice. 

And although they bounced back straight away, the uncertainty and inconsistency for such a big club is not something fans want to become accustomed to. 

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Over the past month, Rafa's side may have the excuse that they are getting distracted from off the field issues, with Mike Ashley and Amanda Staveley still in discussion over a takeover. The SportsDirect owner's reign at the club has been a traumatic one for all involved at the club, with controversy over investment and genuine care for the state of the club coming into question. 

The Magpies failed to land a number of transfer targets in the summer, and despite possessing a wonderful manager in Benitez, they risk falling behind and playing their football in the Championship once again next season. The Spaniard helped them win the title last year, but if they fall back into the second tier it's unlikely he'll remain in charge. 

Benitez's side started the season well, but their lack of fire power and apparent weakness at the back has caused them to be found out on a number of occasions as the season has progressed. 

Dwight Gayle, Joselu and Aleksandar Mitrovic simply don't have the quality to guide their side to a solid mid-table finish - a goal Benitez would've set out at the start of the season. The Magpies have scored only 16 goals all season, showing that they're struggling to compete in the attacking third back in the top flight. 

At the back, Jamaal Lascelles has been the only positive, as the young captain has stepped up to fill a role that is almost untenable in the current position they're in. Behind both Gayle and Joselu, the 24-year-old sits third in his side's scoring charts with two goals, showing how badly his side are missing a world-class forward. 

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With Arsenal and Manchester City coming up in their busy December fixtures, the Magpies may find themselves in the bottom three come the start of the new year - a position that will hamper their chances of bringing in adequate reinforcements. 

Benitez has his eye on Fernando Torres, who would be a brilliant addition to the squad, but he is unlikely to come in should the Toon be so far down the table. 

If the takeover is completed by January, Staveley and PCP Capital will surely have to pump a large amount of money into the squad to keep them in top flight. If they fail to land a quality striker and a solid centre-half to partner Lascelles, they could well find themselves right down the bottom by the end of the season. 

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