Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has said Rafa Benitez has long dreamed of managing Real Madrid one day.
That dream will come true this week, when he is expected to be announced as the successor to Carlo Ancelotti at the Santiago Bernabeu. Reaction to Benitez’ arrival in the Spanish capital has been mixed, with some Madrid fans wanting a coach who plays more attacking football.
But writing in his column for the Daily Mail, Carragher defended his former boss at Anfield and says he doesn’t always get the recognition he deserves.
“A life’s ambition has been realised for Rafa Benitez, who will become Real Madrid’s next manager. When he started out his career in management, this was the job he always dreamed of getting and I know how much it means to him because he used to come up to me every couple of months at Melwood and say ‘Madrid have made me an offer’,” the ex-England defender wrote.
He added: “There has been surprise in some quarters that Madrid have turned to Benitez but, really, he should be thought of more highly within the game, considering his impressive c.v. Never mind what he did for Valencia and Liverpool, he’s won trophies for Inter Milan, Chelsea and Napoli too.”