Football

Benitez stakes Chelsea claim

Next Story →
Rafa wants a return to management. (©GettyImages)
Rafa wants a return to management. (©GettyImages).

Rafael Benitez believes Liverpool fans would forgive him, should he succeed Andre Villas-Boas and become the next permanent Chelsea manager.

Villas-Boas was sacked on Sunday afternoon only 256 days into a three-year contract, with Chelsea facing the very real prospect of failing to qualify for the Champions League under the stewardship of Roman Abramovich.

Benitez has been linked with the position for a number of weeks as the pressure mounted on Villas-Boas following a period of sustained poor form which has left the Blues on the verge of an exit from European competition at the hands of Napoli.

Reports claimed the Spaniard had been offered the opportunity to lead Chelsea for the remainder of the season, but rejected the chance because he would prefer more long-term stability.

Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho would appear to head Abramovich's short-list, but it is unlikely - despite his unpopularity with Chelsea fans - that Benitez is out of the running just yet.

Liverpool and Chelsea endured a difficult relationship when Benitez was at the Anfield helm, but he hopes Kopites would accept his decision, should he move to Stamford Bridge.

"Can anybody argue [against the fact] that the Liverpool fans love me? No," said Benítez, according to The Guardian.

"If we agree with this, what do you want for somebody who you love? The best for him. I cannot be waiting at home for five years. Everybody understands that I will need a job.

"If they want me to have the best, they can say you can manage a team at the bottom of the table or manage a team at a top of the table and try to win trophies.

"That is my idea, to have the option of a top side and try to win trophies. If they love me, they will understand.

"I have had two or three offers from clubs and one from a national team. I want to win trophies; it's not just a case of wanting a job and having some money. It has to be something.

"They have now Roberto Di Matteo in [temporary] charge, and I have to respect the manager in charge. I have to wait and [see] if something happens in the future. As a manager with experience in the Champions League, in Spain and in Italy, I am open to offers."

Topics:
Football
Chelsea
Premier League
Next Story →

Article Comments

Trending

Read more

Scroll for more articles below.