Newcastle United have identified Lyon manager Bruno Genesio as a potential replacement for Rafa Benitez, should the Spaniard up sticks this summer – although Genesio is likely to re-sign with the French club before the end of the season.
Benitez is out of contract at St James' Park this summer and despite the club finally breaking their erstwhile transfer record with the purchase of Miguel Almiron in January, there is still some fear that the ownership situation at the club will push him out the door.
As reported by L'Equipe, the Magpies have charged football agent Pini Zahavi with the role of searching for potential successors, with Zahavi, having just taken on Genesio as a client, putting his name highest on the list.
Genesio is another whose contract is set to expire this summer, and though both club and manager are interested in a renewal, as it stands the Frenchman would still be availaible compensation-free.
He has earned plaudits from around the footballing world for his hand in Lyon's successful Champions League campaign this season, which included a victory over Manchester City and a sizeable scare for Barcelona in the last 16, before a burst of late goals in the second leg sent La Blaugrana through.
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After 10 years at the club as a player, Bruno took his first ever managerial job at Olympique Lyonnais in 2015, and has gone on to nurture a number of the world's greatest youth talents, including Nabil Fekir, Memphis Depay, Ferland Mendy, Tanguy Ndombele and Moussa Dembele.
Newcastle currently sit 13th in the Premier League table, six points clear of the relegation zone with eight games left to play.
Source : 90min