Rafa Benitez has spoken of his desire to manage again with a role in the Premier League his overwhelming preference. Should struggling QPR consider the former Liverpool boss as a direct replacement for Mark Hughes?
“I would like to be on the pitch all the time. It’s something that you enjoy but I’ve said before, you have to wait. I have experience in three countries. You have to wait for the right offer. In the meantime, we have to keep watching games and analysing games. I’m open to top sides if they can compete but the priority could be the Premier League because we know the league and the family are settled down here. It’s a great league at the same time so to go there is right.”
Those were the words of Rafa Benitez in an interview with popular tabloid The Sun. To be fair it is no surprise that Rafa is getting itchy feet as he has been out of work since losing his position at Inter Milan at the tail-end of 2010.
Of course we all know what the 52-year-old is capable of after successful spells at Valencia and of course Liverpool where he is still revered by many a fan.
This summer he made it clear that he was not interested in another job in Italy after rejecting talk of taking over at AC Milan and turning down the opportunity to lead Sampdoria so has he really got his heart set on the Premier League?
Rafa took the country to his heart during his six-year-stay on Merseyside and is still often seen alongside the likes of Gaizka Mendieta and Guillem Balague on Sky Sports coverage of La Liga giving his usual on the money analysis of proceedings.
So if he is to return to the Premier League where would he go?
The bookies have Nigel Adkins as the favourite to get the sack first but my money would be on QPR boss Mark Hughes. He seems lost at Loftus Road trying to get his ramshackle collection of stars playing cohesively is becoming an equation of neurosurgical complication to the Welshman.
Tony Fernandes continues to back his man but the amount of money the club hierarchy has pumped into first-team improvements needs a significant return, and fast, in order for the former Fulham boss to remain.
So should Fernandes consider lining up Rafa as a replacement? Well obviously but would the Spaniard take the role?
Personally I think he would. Regardless of their league position the QPR squad is full to the brim with precocious talent that any manager who has been out of work for two years would be killing to get their hands on. QPR are barely struggling for finances so offering him an attractive employment package should also be no problem.
At the moment conjecture is conjecture for a reason and Hughes is still at the helm but if his slide continues I can’t think of any manager currently available better suited to take his place.
Would you like to see Rafa Benitez become QPR’s latest big-name signing?