By 90Min
January 21, 2018

Mike Ashley has informed Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez that he can spend however much money he needs to keep the club in the Premier League, the Mirror has reported.

Ashley will reportedly use his own money in an attempt to avoid relegation, after accusing financier Amanda Staveley and her PCP capital partners group of creating a publicity circus over a potential takeover.

Ashley has insisted that, despite claims of three offers from Staveley, there is no evidence of a firm bid being made.

A source close to Ashley said: “Mike feels that Amanda Staveley, who he has no problem with as an individual, has played out the attempt to take over the club in public. Most deals he has been involved in have been struck behind closed doors with the announcement arriving after they’re concluded.

“He has seen all the promises of future investment in the club from her and he knows it makes good reading. But quite simply he hasn’t seen proof that the money is in place and has effectively pulled the plug until that situation changes.”

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Stu Forster/GettyImages

But Ashley's apparent reluctance to sell is not expected to impact on Benitez's budget for the remainder of the January transfer window.

Newcastle's owner is reportedly fully aware that relegation would see his current £350m valuation of the club plummet.

Ashley has also recognised that, without investment this month, the Magpies could be in danger of finishing in the bottom three.

Sunday's 3-1 defeat against leaders Manchester City left Benitez's side in 15th place, two points above the relegation zone.

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