Daily Mail UK reports that Benitez arrived at St James’ Park just after lunchtime today and was confirmed as boss before heading to the club’s training ground to meet his new players.
The 55-year-old, who will take training this weekend before Monday’s trip to Leicester, said: “I have the pleasure to confirm I have committed to a legendary English club, with the massive challenge of remaining part of the Premier League.
“It will be a challenge not just for me and my staff but for the players, the club and the fans.
“All of us must push together in the same direction and with the same target in mind. This is the reason why I’m going to ask for your total support to successfully complete this task.
“Personally, it means my return to the Premier League, closer to my home and my family. I can’t be happier.
“C’mon Toon Army! The club and I need your total involvement!’
Managing director Lee Charnley added: ‘I am very pleased to welcome Rafa Benitez to the club. In Rafa we have, without doubt, secured the services of one of Europe’s top managers.
‘He has managed some of the most successful teams at the very highest level of the game and we are proud to now have him as our manager.