Liverpool: Rafael Benitez Hints At Return


Rafa Benitez and Fernando Torres at Liverpool – Flickr Creative Commons

Is Rafael Benitez Heading Back To Liverpool?

Former Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has fueled speculation surrounding a return to Liverpool. Benitez is now in his second season as the head coach of Serie A outfit Napoli.

Napoli currently occupy the third spot on the table with 21 points — seven points behind leaders Juventus and four points behind second-placed Roma.

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Benitez took charge of Liverpool in 2004, but was let go by the club in 2010, following a series of poor results. He led the club through a very successful period, during which they won the FA Cup, Champions League and UEFA Supercup — making him Liverpool’s most successful manager of recent times.

Benitez also managed Inter Milan for one season, but that didn’t go so well. He took up an interim managerial position with Chelsea in 2013, where he won the Europa League, but most Chelsea fans never warmed up to him due to disparaging comments he made while he was at Liverpool.

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With the Reds going through a very muddy patch, it is being rumored that Benitez will be replacing current manager Brendan Rodgers. Benitez himself has always stated his desire to someday return to the club, and now is as good a time as any.

The Spanish manager had a few words of encouragement  for Liverpool during an interview with Sky Sports HQ.

"“You have to have this experience and say ‘what can we do now?’. We cannot change what happened so we have to think ‘what can we do for the future? How can we be in the same position?’ So I think that’s the only thing.“When we finished second I was really pleased because we had 86 points and it still was not enough and everyone went ‘oh you lost an opportunity’. So if you continue moaning about ‘oh we lost an opportunity’ you will not be ready for the future. So I think you have to concentrate on what you did well, what you did badly and then try to improve for the future, for the next one.”Source:"

He is now in new contract talks with Napoli, but he did not rule out a move to the Premier League. He pointed out that his family still lived in England, but is that enough to go by?

"“Also my family is still here in England so we have to consider a lot of things. But the main thing for me is to concentrate on my job and do my best for the next game.”“I have had conversations this year for a new contract with Napoli. I am really pleased there and happy. The chairman is supporting me all the time but in football you never know.”Source:"

I’m sure many Liverpool supporters would love it if Benitez returned — after all, returning seems to be the trend nowadays. Jose Mourinho returned to Chelsea last season, Roberto Mancini also went back to Inter just last week, so I wouldn’t be surprised if Benitez were to find his way back to Anfield.

It’s very likely that Liverpool will stick it out with Rodgers, but if results don’t improve by the turn of the year, they may have no choice but to let him go.