Benitez admits surprise at being overlooked for vacant Liverpool manager's job in the summer

By Sportsmail Reporter


Surprise: Rafa Benitez has admitted his disappointment at being overlooked for the Liverpool manager's post following the dismissal of Kenny Dalglish in the summer

Surprise: Rafa Benitez has admitted his disappointment at being overlooked for the Liverpool manager's post following the dismissal of Kenny Dalglish in the summer

Rafa Benitez has told of his surprise that he was not approached about the Liverpool job in the summer.

The Spaniard, who managed the Anfield club between 2004 and 2010, was not considered for the role left vacant when Kenny Dalglish was sacked in May despite knowing the club inside out.

Launching a new book called ‘Champions League Dreams’, which recalls how Liverpool challenged for European honours during his time there, Benitez, who is currently without a club, said it was ‘strange’ to be overlooked in favour of Brendan Rodgers.

Talking to the Irish Independent, he said: ‘It was strange. We know the club, the players, the Academy and we have even more experience now.

‘The fans were positive about the idea and if you read the book you will understand why. So it was strange not to be approached.’

During his tenure, Liverpool regularly competed in the Champions League and won the competition in 2005, his first season in charge. They also reached the final in 2007 and won the FA Cup in 2006, alongside a succession of top four league finishes.

‘Some people were taking these great games for granted,’ he said. ‘We used to play so many important games that it seemed it was normal and it wasn’t.’

Following a patchy start to the season, as Rodgers tries to introduce a philosophy of attractive, attacking football, some sections of the Liverpool support have suggested owner John W Henry may be as bad as former American chiefs Tom Hicks and George Gillett.

Looking for work: Benitez has been without a managerial role for nearly two years after being sacked by Inter Milan

Looking for work: Benitez has been without a managerial role for nearly two years after being sacked by Inter Milan

Benitez remembers those days only too well: ‘I was working three years under Hicks and Gillett and it was quite difficult, especially the last year.

‘Ian Ayre [the club’s Managing Director] said Liverpool was close to administration and still we were performing on the pitch. I don’t know how it us under the new owners so I can’t compare.’

Benitez hasn’t been in managerial work since an ill-fated spell at Inter Milan in 2010, but he says ‘it’s a question of time’ before he is on the touchline again. He did, however, refuse to comment on how close he came to the Chelsea job after Andre Villas-Boas was dismissed.




The comments below have been moderated in advance.

I for one would welcome Rafa back.... Although Brendan seems to be doing a decent job!

Click to rate     Rating   5

Been saying this for a while, Liverpool need Rafa... He's the only top class manager who'll join Liverpool at this present state and get them out of the rut they are in and back up to genuine Champions League contention.

Click to rate     Rating   18

So Rafa was surprised he wasn't considered for the Liverpool job. He was sacked at Liverpool .......FACT !

Click to rate     Rating   11

Perhaps Derek Acorah could exorcise this ghost which remains earthbound to Anfield, and unable to pass over ? (despite a multi-million pound P45 to ' Do One ' ! )

Click to rate     Rating   1

Realist pls stop stalking me, every article I ever post on u follow me.... The amount is times u have done it is embarrassing, people are gonna notice !!! Maybe it is u who has set up a 'charliegmo' user name and are posting things under my name.... One of u keyboard warriors have, that's just weird if u cannot beat me don't try and join me.... STALKER !!!

Click to rate     Rating   6

He's just a sad, old fool hanging around Anfield like a bad smell. Gissa job.

Click to rate     Rating   22

Ah ha ha ha ha begging for a team again ain't ya? No team wants to have ya becos of your bad signings. You had almost the identical team the Special One the CL with at Inter and took them to 7th place you arrogant fool. Sir Alex's good friend; Houlier's team won everthing for you.... and by the way never ever mess with the greatest manager of all time, your boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

Click to rate     Rating   29

Benitez is a self publicising clown but he's justified in being puzzled at the scousers fumblings in trying to appoint a decent manager. What he ignores of course is it was the same fumblings that saw him appointed. It also saw "King Kenny" being brought back after they had inadvertantly stumbled on the perfect man for the job but Hodgson wasn't sexy enough for the Kop so they fulfilled Dr Johnsons description of a man remarrying and allowing hope to overcome bitter experience but even they weren't stupid enough to do it twice. The man they should have appinted was the man who built the team that gave Rogers the only blemish on a perfect failure of a career. After losing Woy, Martinez was by far the best man for the job which is probably why the Scousers didn't appoint him.

Click to rate     Rating   21

charliegmo, ci, 10/09/2012 21:33 The sheer amount of comments this guy is leaving is embarrassing! Every Liverpool article I go on, I see this name posting rubbish time and time again, just to wind up all the kopites... Must have waaaay to much time on his hands! By the way, I don't support Liverpool, I just despise 'trolling'... All u DM reading reds... Stop giving him red arrows and perhaps he'll stop wasting every1s time! Then perhaps I can read some worthwhile, interesting, informative comments from people who actually give a monkeys about their own club!

Click to rate     Rating   21

Never mess with Sir Alex...

Click to rate     Rating   49

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