After reading between all of the lines on the transcript, several media sources have today reported that decorated Spanish boss Rafa Benitez is fed up with life at Napoli and wants a return to England.
Just how they came to this conclusion remains unclear from these comments:
“I have one year left this year and the future you never know, but I am talking with the chairman, thinking about the future with Napoli and life and all the possibilities.
“I want to win and do well this season and see where we are at the end.”
Nevertheless, the former Liverpool supremo has skyrocketed to the head of the betting be the next Reds boss, available to back at 7/1 to succeed Brendan Rodgers.
While Benitez has made no recent insinuations that he wants his old job back, nor is there any suggestion that the Anfield head honchos are thinking about presenting Rodgers with his P45, it got the bwinbetting scribes debating who is the superior manager of the two.
The answer is blatantly obvious: Rafa Benitez.
To give Rodgers a fighting chance we won’t take trophy haul into consideration (the Spaniard leads 7-0 in this category), but even without this all-important factor, the verdict does not deviate.
First off, Benitez knows what he’s doing in Europe.
Liverpool’s 2004/05 Champions League win was made possible thanks to some textbook continental away performances masterminded by the 54-year-old.
Rodgers is a complete rookie when it comes to international club competition and the results he’s recording make no attempt to mask the fact.
Another subject in which Benitez is the teacher’s pet is defending; the Ulsterman sits enviously in the corner of the same class donning the dunce’s cap.
Legendary Liverpool stopper Pepe Reina picked up three successive Premier League Golden Glove awards (handed out to the keeper with the most clean sheets at the end of the season) between 2005/06 and 2007/08.
His replacement Simon Mignolet shipped 50 in his first season at Anfield on account of Rodgers’ inability to construct a backline solid enough to offer him even semi-decent protection.
Then we have their transfer dealings to consider.
Benitez handcrafted a spectacular midfield that brought the best out of three world-class assets in Javier Mascherano, Xabi Alonso and Steven Gerrard.
With the exception of Daniel Sturridge and, perhaps, Philippe Coutinho, Rodgers inherited all those that guided the Reds to within a whisker of a first Premier League title from previous regimes.
His toils in failing to replace departed Luis Suarez, the finest of the bunch, suggests he’d have failed in spectacular fashion if he’d been tasked to construct a side capable of recording a top-four finish were the foundations not already laid for him.