Rafa Benitez has joined Real Madrid to tidy up another mess of Jose Mourinho as per the wife of the Spanish manager.
Rafael Benitez replaced Carlo Ancelotti at Real Madrid after joining from Napoli earlier this summer, and in the process, has now managed a former Jose Mourinho club for the third time having previously taken charge at Inter Milan and Chelsea FC
Cleaners of Mourinho’s mess
Benitez’s wife Montserrat Seara joked that it seems almost fated that her husband should continue to join clubs managed by the Portuguese manager.
“We tidy up his messes,” she joked, speaking to La Region. “If you think about it, of course you end up crossing paths. There are only a few world-class clubs out there.”
Rafa explained 4-4-2 to me on our first date
Benitez’s wife is a law professor and says her husband’s infamous obsession for the game remains unabated despite the difficult circumstances of his time with Napoli.
“On our first date, Rafa explained to me what a 4-4-2 was. He finds it hard to stay away from the game,” she said. “The year we spent at home he helped coach the local school team. It was hilarious. He stood on the sidelines and shouted at them as if they were first division players, waving his arms about. He doesn’t see football as work, it’s his passion.
“It was hard to see each other over the winter in Napoli. There were no direct flights and it was complicated. Things will be much easier now in Madrid.”
Tinkering made him unpopular at Liverpool FC
Seara believes Benitez’s tendency to tinker with starting line-ups left him hugely unpopular with a few fans by the end of his spell at Liverpoo FC.
“Even I don’t know them,” she said of his tactics. “Sometimes I ask him, who’s going to play? He says he doesn’t know yet. They criticised him at Liverpool for constantly tweaking his starting XI. I thought his two best friends in England were going to kill him.”
One thing is for sure, Real Madrid will get a lot of attention to detail and tinkering to their line up and a master tactician at work in the dug out.
What remains to be seen is if he is able to perform the way he did in his first half of his career between 2001 to 2008 where he won two La Ligas and a UEFA Cup with Valencia and an FA Cup and Champions League with Liverpool FC or the later half where he could hardly win any significant trophy or have any significant achievement between 2009 to 2015.