UNAI EMERY turned down Newcastle after learning of a ‘termination clause’ in his proposed contract, according to reports.
The former Arsenal boss emerged as the Toon’s preferred candidate to succeed Steve Bruce this week.
Such was Newcastle’s confidence in their pursuit, that they believed Emery would be in place by the time they face Brighton this weekend.
But they have been left stunned after the 49-year-old decided to stay at Villarreal.
The Magpies are currently second bottom of the Premier League and are winless in ten games this season.
Rafael Benitez was afforded the opportunity to take Newcastle straight back up in 2016, after they were last relegated from the Premier League.
Emery is also said to have been concerned by the ‘chaotic’ nature of the Toon’s managerial hunt.
FREE BETS: GET OVER £2,000 IN NEW CUSTOMER DEALS
He was also irritated by how talks with Newcastle were leaked in the build-up to his Villarreal side’s Champions League clash with Young Boys.
Following his team’s 2-0 win, he hailed his relationship with the Yellow Submarine’s owners.
He said: “No matter how much noise there was yesterday in another country, within the club there was transparency and loyalty with the Roig family and with my squad, and for me it is the most important thing. Villarreal is my home and I am 100 per cent committed.
“That is why I communicated to Fernando Roig my decision to want to continue being part of this project because of the commitment and respect that I perceive from the club and from my players, which is mutual and reciprocal.”
Villarreal currently sit 13th in LaLiga, having won just two of 11 games this term.
Newcastle, meanwhile, are set to turn to back-up choice Eddie Howe.
The former Bournemouth boss has been out of work since leaving the Cherries following their relegation from the Premier League in 2020.
⚽ Read our Football news live blog for the very latest rumours, gossip and done deals