Former Liverpool midfielder and current Match of the Day pundit Danny Murphy believes Rafa Benitez is heading for disaster as he prepares to take the reigns at his new club, Real Madrid.
Benitez is set to re-join the club he began his coaching career with nearly 30 years ago.
Murphy, who played 170 game under Benitez at Anfield doesn’t think the Spaniard has what it takes to manage the Castilla outfit.
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Having spent a brief time under Benitez upon Merseyside, Murphy revealed all in an interview with Colin Murray on talkSPORT.
“My gut feeling is it might end in tears, just with the type of players and egos he is dealing with at Real Madrid,” said the ex-England international.
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“My understanding of him all those years ago, the type of personality he is, he is going to have to eat a bit of humble pie and bite his tongue at times with the type of squad he has inherited.
“Now he is dealing with the biggest players in the world. Has he found that compromise?
“He had a big bust-up with the senior players at Inter Milan, [Javier] Zanetti being the main guy. Has he backed down a little bit or mellowed a little bit where he can communicate with top stars?”
Benitez has become renowned for his tactically heavy approach to football matches. Often spending hours researching and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of both his own players and the opposition.
Murphy spoke openly on the differing approach that Benitez made to communicate and relay instructions with players.
“A story which was evident of his personality was on his first day [at Liverpool]. On the training pitch he came up to Stevie G and me and there was no 'how are you', or anything like that. He simply said to me, ‘you need to be more like him’. And he said to Stevie, ‘you need to be more like him’.
“What he was saying to me was I needed to be fitter and stronger and run about more, put myself about more, like Stevie. And he was saying to Stevie he had to learn more about technical awareness, something I had, which I got from Crewe mainly, having being coached so well as a kid.
“It was said in such a direct manner that it was like ‘wow, this guy is new, but he has already been watching videos, he has seen us play, he knows what he wants’. That is the footing he started off on."
Murphy played almost 600 games in a career that saw him play for Crewe Alexandra, Liverpool, Tottenham, Fulham and Blackburn Rovers.
Despite the cautious approach to Bentiez that’s been encouraged by Murphy; at times the 55-year-old's record speaks for itself.
Benitez has won the Champions League, the FA Cup, La Liga and the Europa League in his time as a manager.
His only real failure coming at Milan. The Spaniard failed to continue on from Jose Mourinho’s treble winning legacy as Benitez was hired in June of 2010 and sacked by December of the same year.
Benitez has signed a three year deal with Madrid and it remains to be seen if he can move on from disappointing seasons at Napoli and Inter.
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