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 By PA Sport

Rafa Benitez: I don't have information on Newcastle takeover

Rafa Benitez insisted he was still in the dark over Amanda Staveley's proposed Newcastle takeover after seeing his team slump to a seventh defeat in eight Premier League outings.

Wayne Rooney's 27th-minute goal ultimately secured a 1-0 win for Everton at St James' Park as they extended their unbeaten run under new manager Sam Allardyce to four games.

Much of the talk on Tyneside ahead of kick-off surrounded reports that Staveley's PCP Capital Partners are close to agreeing a £300 million deal with current owner Mike Ashley, but Press Association Sport reports that sources close to the negotiations insisted no agreement was in place and nothing had been signed.

"I don't have any information," Benitez said. "As I said the other day, I need to know how much money we will have for January as soon as possible, that's it, but I don't have information about the takeover."

Rafa Benitez has made clear his desire to enhance his squad in the January window.

With Ashley having put the club up for sale after admitting he cannot afford to finance Benitez's blueprint for success following a disappointing summer transfer window, the former Liverpool boss is hoping to be able to strengthen his squad significantly next month amid speculation that the current owner will be reimbursed whatever he invests once a takeover has been completed.

Whoever is at the helm once the window opens will be under pressure to spend with Newcastle currently just one point above the relegation zone.

Against Everton, Newcastle will count themselves unfortunate to have been punished for a Karl Darlow error after twice hitting the woodwork before the break, but their woes were compounded in stoppage time when midfielder Jonjo Shelvey was sent off for a second bookable offence, which will cost him a two-match ban.

Benitez said: "It's very difficult to accept and to understand, but we have to be sure that the players are not down for too long because we have to prepare for the next game."

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