Benitez having a break at Internazionale?

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Rafa was axed after a torrid last season and many believed this was the obvious and fitting conclusion to the reign of a manager who, supposedly, brought regression to the club. Some argued that Rafa was planning an exit well before the season ended with, notably, Juventus waiting in the shadows to employ the Spaniard. True to say, we all saw it coming – media pundits were pushing for Rafa’s exit – actually Rafa’s exile – the day after the man challenged Ferguson during the famous press conference now known as “Rafa’s Rant”. Odds were continuously slashed until the day came when Rafa’s departure was announced.

It now seems the answer to my question “who sanctioned Rafa’s exit” penned in my previous article has been answered by Benitez himself after exposing how the managing director appointed by Hicks – Mr Purslow – gave the green light to offload Rafa. This all adds to quite a bit of rumour and innuendo and many reports have been posted suggesting that Mr Purslow and Mr Benitez never saw eye to eye. We can only speculate in this regard and hope this is not the truth (although Benitez’ cryptic words suggest he and Purslow, at one point, did fall out). Mr Purslow has been a key figure in the sale process and Chartered Bank sponsorship – and we all thank him so much for his efforts – however, if he did really push for Benitez to leave (the mutual consent story is just a cover up of the whole cock up) than we all need to know why and on what grounds. Fans demand an explanation. Was the decision taken by Mr Purslow only or was he tipped to do so by some else in the hierarchy?

One crazy theory that was borne in my mind a few days after Rafa’s alleged “mutual consent resignation” fiasco is that Rafa agreed to temporarily move on to another club until the ownership saga was resolved (back then, nobody was certain it would have been resolved swiftly). A stand-in manager, in the form of Roy Hodgson would manage team matters pending the arrival of new owners and then be removed for Benitez to be re-instated as Liverpool manager. This sounds crazy indeed and wouldn’t make sense by virtue of the fact that a successful Roy Hodgson (which he currently is not) would be hard to sack. This theory is far-fetched I know so I’d like the reader to view this from another angle.

Benitez is one of them great managers in Liverpool’s history so leaving the way he did is hard to stomach. In interviews, he frequently mentions Liverpool and at one point suggested his home was in Liverpool and that he’ll return one day, could be in a few months time – not exactly what you’d expect from a person who has just left one club and is now on the salary books of another.

As pointed above, Benitez has this elegant way of scrambling words, so one must read in between the lines to get the whole picture. Mr Purslow’s resignation today only adds fuel to the notion that, Benitez, now would be in a perfect setup to bring Liverpool back to good times. New owners, no Purslow, not many changes in the playing squad and an improved medical structure. I’m sure Benitez is itching to come back. He has an un-finished job at Anfield and we all know what that is. Benitez will not push to get back at Liverpool out of respect for Moratti and company at Internazionale. But I’m sure if conditions are right, we may see a return of the great man. Let us not forget it was Rafa who turned Liverpool FC into a force to be reckoned.

In Rafa we STILL trust.

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  1. Finally! I applaud you for this: an article that renews my faith that Rafa will be returned to where he belongs. I will be writing to Mr. Henry to demand that Rafa be considered as replacement for the woeful Hodgson. There’s much that makes me think that Rafa would be the perfect manager for owners who share the man’s obsession to the fine detail and having a long-term gameplan.

  2. I’d like to see his return, although I doubt it would happen.
    Im pretty certain Roy wont last too much longer, however I would rather see O’Neill, Hiddink, Rijkaard (but only if he is assisted by Henk Ten Cate) and of course w/ Purslow out they way King kenny will be seriously considered

  3. And here we have Bobbie Ewing coming out of the dressing room showers…..what have you been drinking my friend and can I have some?

  4. I dont believe the conspiracy part as being at all possible. But I hope he comes back – Sooner the better.

    In Rafa abbiamo fiduca

  5. Rafa is a Liverpool legend. Yes he had a relatively poor last season, but now we know by the current situation, just how much he held things together. Don’t get fooled by the view that he left a poor squad, it is certainly better that the current performances suggest. With proper backning from a benign Board, Rafa would achieve what we all want, Liverpool back on their perch. NESV, sack the buffoon Hodgson and get in a proper manager, one who has the Club at heart. I’m sure his milkman would love to see him back!

  6. Nice theory (always love conspiracy theories!)……. I think most Liverpool fans would welcome him back. When I read his interview he did mention that he’d like to come back, he still has the club very much in his heart it seems. And as you said, he feels he has unfinished business to do.

    Purslow has stepped down and soon it will be Broughton. Both were brought in only to help find new owners for Liverpool so now that’s done, it’s the right thing for them to do.

    The business off the pitch is being ironed out nicely so now it’s time to get the business on the pitch up and running!

  7. you have got short memories ( lucas babbel dossena jonavic johnson) he got rid of alonso, riise ,sami ,owen, arbeloa, keane, cisse, bellamy ,sissoko,garcia ,crouch ,pennant , baros need i go on anymore clowns

  8. No way hose ! It would be a step back in my opinion, I like Benitez for what he helped us to win ,but we need a new manager with fresh ideas and to me it’s had to be Rikard or klinsman , forget Martin o’neil and forget King Kenny (unless it’s temporary ) but who ever is going to come in as the manager needs to come now so they can asses what needs to be done and start shopping for players before , the transfer window opens , please please DON’T GIVE ROY BOY THE FUNDS TO SPEND . SACK HIM NOW !

  9. lol so lets get the manager who forced xabi to leave,and arbeloa,and keane(waste of 15mill) wasted 15 mill on aquaman,played players out of positions,and never gave a chance to anyone in the right positions…..

    raffa can stay in inter and replace jose at real leaving jose free to come to us.

    i cant belive some lfc fans,i cant believe they have put raffa on some kinda peda stool and they way they go on its as if raffa is god,he won 2 trophys in 6 years…yeah sounds like agod to me…

    raaf is the past and it should be left in the past,time for a new start through out the club…..

  10. Very insightful mate, as much as i really do hope this is true, it does seem far fetched for him to leave one season, break his contract at Milan and jump to his real home.. Maybe a year from now, 2011 christmas depending how we are doing (with a newly appointed manager) we will get a little Rafa present haaha.. Good thinking though on this article, well done mate.

    @Antoine , with so much Rafa and Hodgson talk, we should have a Category for them! haha

    Brandon, The Passionate Red

  11. Very insightful mate, as much as i really do hope this is true, it does seem far fetched for him to leave one season, break his contract at Milan and jump to his real home.. Maybe a year from now, 2011 christmas depending how we are doing (with a newly appointed manager) we will get a little Rafa present haaha.. Good thinking though on this article, well done mate.

    @Antoine , with so much Rafa and Hodgson talk, we should have a Category for them! haha

    Brandon, The Passionate Red
    Follow me on Twitter: @Brandon_OShea

  12. To be honest the exit of Benitez was inevitable because he signed the current crop of no-marks who cannot compete at the top level and introduced tactics which stifle any type of creativity and flair.

    Rafa, in my eyes, is not welcome back to the club as manager. He valued players like Kuyt, Kyrgiakos, Jovanovic (yes a Benitez signing) etc. over players such as Crouch, Bellamy, Keane, Alonso and Hyypia. He continually fell out with players (Alonso, Bellamy, Keane) and staff (Parry, Purslow, the yanks, Ayesteran – his supposed best friend) and couldn’t stomach anything other than his version of the truth.

    Being 22 he brought me the greatest moment I’ve ever had supporting Liverpool (Istanbul), but after the FA Cup he single-handedly dismantled the team and created a one-trick poney, reliant on 3 players (Gerrard, Torres and Alonso), the most important of whom, considered the best passer of a ball in world football (Alonso) he tried to flog and replace with Gareth Barry!

    Stay away Rafa, please stay away!

  13. Bring Rafa back, 40 years a fan and he is up there with the greats I have watched in my time. He brought us back to the point where people did not want to play us, a position that we have now lost again.

    Also he gave red nose a run for his money, the kind of thing now many people can do and I include Maureen in that.

  14. Welcome Benitez back – you can only be described as delusional and in need of serious psychiatric help – I agree The Fat Spanish Waiter is a Liverpool legend – as the man who wasted more money than any other manager in history on average players – and before you mention Torres, Mascherano and Reina – a blind man not involved in football couldn’t get that wrong – just think of – Skirtel, Dossena, Johnson, Maxi, Josemi ( better than Johnson I admit )Reira, Babel ( overpriced )the list could go on.

  15. uz avin a laugh,tactics shit,most buys shit,when paco went he fell apart,u people got short memories if u want go backwards get rafa

  16. This is exactly what I was hoping and I cewrtainly could see Rafa coming back. He loves this club as much as we do. I really want this man back in charge so I rather hope you are right about this.

  17. You are a prize fool!

    ‘Rafa turned us into a force to be reckoned with’ – when was that exactly?!

    Rafa deserved the sack. He made far too many incorrect decisions, incorrect team selections, talked too much rubbish (like yesterday) and helped to make the club a laughing stock. He should have gone sooner in reality.

  18. I was going to read this but i glanced down and saw the “In Rafa we STILL trust” …I give up .

  19. What a misty eyed lot some of you are! And with very short memories too. People seem to forget that this was the same man that led us to 7th place last season. Not good enough. Not to mention the way he alienated one of our best players in Alonso and tried to get rid of him for two seasons in succession with Gareth Barry. Is anybody seriously suggesting that Barry was a better alternative to Alonso? I think you’ll find that our loss in form coincided with the Alonso departing and Masherano wanting out. He bought some great players, like Torres, Masherano and Alonso, but also spent vass sums of money on a lot of dross, such as Keane etc. When was the last time we actually won any silverwear under Benitez then? And as for 2nd place with 86 points two years ago, who cares? 2nd place is nowhere and history doesn’t care much for that. The great Leeds team finished 2nd place 5 times during a short period and nobody cares. The Premier League is the true measure of a great side and he blew his best chance two years ago. I for one don’t want him back, so the rest of you dream on, because it will never happen

  20. Nice conspiracy theory =)

    That he hasn’t sold his house in Liverpool and that he did say he’ll be back adds fire to it.

    But anyway, while I don’t agree with some of the stuff Rafa did (esp re: Lucas, late substitutions, and bizarre tactics at times), I would like to see what he can do with decent funding. Certainly we wouldn’t be seeing the likes of Kyrgiakos and Insua – bought as his 4th or 5th choices because everyone else was out of reach.

    I’d also like to see what he could do with the Academy, which is actually his strong suit but was taken from him halfway.

  21. Although ~I would love Rafa to come back. I know he does return to his Liverpool home when he can. But can’t see it. He was so close and only lack of funds

  22. Yes I would take Rafa back. Top four every season except his first and last, with a 4th, two 3rds and a 2nd place and 2 points totals that would have won the premiership in other seasons. Two European Cup Finals, one Semi one Quarter final and last seasons Europa Cup Semi Final, throw in the FA and European Super Cups, yea I think I would take him back.

  23. Btw all those who were happy to see Rafa go, I for one am not enjoying being in 19th place, and before you all say its Rafa’s squad, yes you are right and do you think we would be in 19th with that same squad if Rafa was still manager? Exactly.

    Now we have someone else’s 5 year plan, at least we were always up there with Rafa and with the new owners behind him we would be even closer, how we would love to be in 7th now. One season doesn’t make a bad manager.

    In Rafa we trust

  24. I am a fan of Benitez and didnot want him to be scaked but I find it difficult to beleive if he will return in near future.
    I know from a very good source that Rafa was sacked on request of
    1. Steve Gerrard and Carragher met Purslow and told him so and Gerrard made a threat that if he stays I will go. this was aslo briefly mentioned in last interview Hicks gave to SKY
    2. Many bidders to buy Liverpool including NESV were keen for Benitez to be removed as thwy found him to problematic to deal with.
    so I dont think that would happen with new owners and as long as Gerrard is in Liverpool

  25. I’m glad some of the more bright followers of this site read into the real meaning of the article rather than focus on the conspiracy theory I proposed (yes it is far fetched, it was meant to be!).


    1. Rafa is top notch: he won us the CL so he’s up there with the best.
    2. He nearly won us the premiership – can’t remember a team – bar a stable Chelsea with a billionaire pumping millions, and Arsenal – put so much pressure on Man Utd.
    3. True to say he bought a few crap players; then again noone’s perfect, all great managers had one or two regrets in terms of transfers.
    4. He really had Liverpool at heart.

  26. People Who are calling for Rafa’s services They don’t know Liverpool’s history: Liverpool never recall for a manager Who ended his reign after six yrs in charge.
    The story is over.
    Move on.
    I do not live in the past because I know & love the history of my beloved football CLub: Liverpool have always the strenght to move on.
    The past lives in the past.
    The Club needs a new story, new tactics, fresh ideas and a fresh start.
    Whether Roy Hodgson is good enough or He’s not good enough some People should stop the dream to re-live their personal Cult.
    I belong to Liverpool Football Club, with all of my heart and passion.
    I care only about Liverpool Football Club, I’m not pro or anti anyone because I’m only Pro – Liverpool Football Club.
    In fact during these bad moments I have no problem to criticise Mister Roy Hodgson, although I respect him like a person because the respect is a value of Liverpool’s way.
    I won’t never insult the man in charge after just seven games, although I suspect He’s not good enough.
    At anyway, I’ll back him.
    Maybe I could fall in error, but it seems that some people are Rafa’s followers Who only care about one man, instead of LFC Fans.
    I care only about Liverpool and his men in red, I’m only Pro – Liverpool and I’m not interested to Pro – Anti Rafa’s agenda.
    Rafa is the past, so best whishes for him and good luck for the rest of his career.
    YNWA Rafa, but I’m Liverpool’s fan, and it’s time to move on.

  27. I cannot understand certain clowns saying against Benite\. Let’s make some things straight. To that idiot (john) who said that players like Torres, Mascherano, Reina would have been bought by anyone as they are great. Maybe one forgets that Torres was not bought by Ferguson as he said he was a ‘liability’ and maybe ‘john’ forgets that Mascherano was brought after the West Ham fiasco, people actually demanding if he did the right thing to bring him to Liverpool. We all know what happened after don’t we? Also to the other idiots who said because he disposed of good players (Alonso ONLY mind you!) well 1) He did not have the finances so he had to sell to buy and 2) Many of them players were NOT his preferred targets. It is sad since there was even an idiot who mentioned Pennant, where even a 5 year old boy would play better than him! Not to mention how the media puffed up the so said ‘spending’ of Rafa, which was inferior to Ferguson et al! Maybe these muppets fail to see that EVERY manager makes mistakes in the transfer market. Taibi, Djemba Djemba, Kleberson, Veron, Forlan, Anderson anyone! So is rednose a bad manager now? Muppets!

  28. Speak for yourself. Rafa was great when he joined, but made too many enemies and was killing the club. After 6 years and buying almost 50 players, he moaned he needed another 5 or 6. With his track record, that would mean another 240m spent hoping to get lucky. By then, our decent players would be passed their prime.

    Let’s not forget he lost 27 point between 08/09 and 09/10 using his own players.

  29. We can only hope that he does come back, Rafa defo has unfinished business at Liverpool, the title for one!! he took us close a couple of seasons ago, now with all the boardroom wranglings gone and the demise of H&G would be a perfect time to welcome back a manager we should never have lost, YNWA JFT96

  30. So many comments about the players that Rafa let go or alienated. The majority of players that Rafa let go, he let go under duress. The mantra from the top was sell before you buy, if it wasn’t for Rafa’s wheeler dealing we would never have had the money for Mascherano, Torres or Aquilani. Rafa made a profit on most of the players he bought then sold, god only knows how bad our financial losses would have been without him.
    Aquilani is an excellent player, he came injured, he took a while to settle and just when we should have been reaping the rewards in his 2nd season, soft ollies Hodgson sends him on loan.
    I and the majority of fans would love Rafa back at the club to finish what he started with new owners and a new MD who would all be singing from the same hymn sheet.

  31. We dont need rafa back.a coach who plays players out of position,remember mach playing at right back whiles we had fit right backs on beach just becos of personal problems with players,selling alonso(big mistake),selling keane for just a season,buying likes of lucas no no we dont need him, he shld stay at inter. when roy leaves we need new manager not rafa.

  32. I prey to god that he comes back .We would not be 19th if he was here.RAFA come back where you belong.In RAFA i will allways trust.

  33. I certainly want Rafa back. His sacking was a complete joke and just look at the mess we are in now. NESV have a track record of “not standing on ceremony” at acting fast! I certainly hope Rafa does come back but I don’t think we will see him, if at all before next season.

  34. lets hope he does come back and let also hope some of those who think badly of him come to understand just how good he has been for us. Puslow’s briefing the press against him and playing back room games with cloaks and daggers and he still managed 7th, Hodgson with the support of the board can barely get us playing out of our own half. The records don’t lie, only the true extent of the campaign against him when he was in charge will demonstrate what a true legend he really was.

  35. European Cup. FA Cup. Gradual prghoression to 2nd in the league with 86 points in 08/09 – remember that Torres and Gerrard were unavailble for large sections of the season.
    Got the best out of Gerrard, Torres, Carragher, Mascherano, Hyypia asked to leave, Crouch asked to leave because he would never play instaed of Torres, Bellamy assaulted Riisse, Arbeloa asked to leave due to homesickness. I won’t comment on some of the daft posts above who claim
    Alonso was average for 2 years prior to his last season. Nobody complained when Rafa first tried to offload him – nobody wanted to pay more than 15mill for him at the time, remember? He had a great season in his last season when he was in the shop window. Also note Rafa bought Alonso when he was barely heard of so surely his purchase and use of Alonso is a positive?
    Last season was bad but does anybody recall the horrendous injuries in the first few months?
    Last 2 seasons net spend on transfers minus £10million.
    Had to make gambles in the transfer market in the last 2 years due to reduced funds – some obviously didn’t pay off and are used as a stick to beat Rafa with.
    Remember the brilliant Valencia team he created that passed opposition of the park on the way 2 La Liga titles.
    Anybody watch Inter tonight?
    Pundits wanted rid of him and hailed the appointment of Hodgson. Do you trust the judgement of the pundits? The ones who claimed England could win the World Cup this year? Maybe we are blinded by xenophobic press and punditry who celebrate our own and seek to undermine foreign managers?
    Check the facts and work it out for yourselves. rafa is a class manager and well respected in Europe. English fans and pundits are thick who can’t form their own opinions.
    I could go on but I hope I made my points.

  36. A bit tongue in cheek and I can only hope it’s true. Rafa is still LOVED in LIVERPOOL despite what some fans say. We progressed every season, until as he said ‘everything changed’.

    And statistically our best manager in the top division since Kenny. Rafa won 56% of games.

    Some people have short memories and want a magic wand.

  37. Paul, John et al…you are too stupid to be Liverpool fans…can I suggest you fuck off and support Chelsea! You are NOT wanted…in fact we real fans fucking HATE the likes of you! You are a cancer in the club and have done as much to destroy it as those two thieving americans!

  38. I love Rafa! He wound me up at times but so does the missus. I cannot thank him enough for the 1-4 at Scum’s, Real etc etc Too many great results to remember. Price of greatness is paid in relationships perhaps. I am proud of his time and happy that he still knows John and loves his home. But I don’t think he would take the job back/ it’s like making up with an ex. It never works in the end.

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