Rafael Benitez
Rafael Benitez took over as Newcastle manager in March 2016Reuters

Rafael Benitez should turn down any opportunities to change clubs that may come his way at the end of the season as he has the chance to build something special at Newcastle, former Magpies striker Craig Bellamy has said.

Benitez, 57, has been among the names linked with the Arsenal job, with current Gunners boss Arsene Wenger coming under increasing pressure to step down at the Emirates Stadium at the end of the season.

The former Liverpool and Real Madrid coach took over as manager at St James' Park in March 2016 on a three-year contract and guided the club back to the Premier League after one season in the Championship.

The Magpies are currently in 16th place in the league, two points above the relegation zone.

Benitez has also been linked with the West Ham job, but Bellamy said the Spaniard can achieve big things at Newcastle if he can help the club stave off relegation.

"Newcastle's a great club, big club, it's been disappointing to see what's happened over the last couple of years," the former Wales international was quoted as saying by the Evening Chronicle.

"I'm sure he didn't expect them to get relegated, but it happened, got them up, this year he hasn't been able to spend as much money as Rafa usually likes to spend.

"Does he deserve [a move to a club like Arsenal]? Listen if he can get Newcastle going it's a top, top football club."

Former Tottenham midfielder Ryan Mason said Newcastle had the "potential to be a fantastic club" and achieve success over the long term.

"You look at his history with Liverpool and winning the Champions League," Mason said.

"He has managed at Real Madrid so he has had that experience of managing the top teams.

"You can never rule it out but Newcastle has the potential to be a fantastic club. If they can stay up this year and kick on next season, you never know what could happen."