The Magpies dropped to 19th position in the Premier League table after a midweek loss at the hands of Stoke, albeit they have a game in hand that could lift them out of the relegation zone.
It’s understood that McClaren’s position at St James Park is now shakier than ever and there have been suggestions that a loss this weekend at the hands of Bournemouth could signal the end of his time in charge of the Tynesiders, with the board worried about the prospect of dropping into the second tier.
And reports claim that should the ex-England gaffer be dismissed, Benitez would consider coming into help save Newcastle’s season.
The 55-year-old back living in the UK after being axed by Real Madrid earlier this season and boasts a deep knowledge of the English game after taking charge of Liverpool and, albeit briefly, Chelsea.
Newcastle are thought to be aware that the former Valencia tactician is open to the idea of stepping in in the North East.
The relegation battlers have also been linked with another ex-Liverpool manager in the shape of Brendan Rodgers in recent times.