Put his popularity, skill and tactics to one side for a moment and bring some logic into the equation.
Liverpool are a club controlled by foreign owners. They keep their distance from football matters, as they rightly should, which allows Brendan Rodgers the space to breathe.
Think back to the Hicks and Gillett era at Liverpool, which is the reason Rafael Benitez ever left the club in the first place, and you have the reason why Benitez may be very reluctant to go back there.
Yes, he’s said he’s ready to go back as manager one day but that probably depends on a set of criteria he’s already planned out in his mind which may not include the point of third party ownership of the club.
The problem in the first place was Benitez felt he was being undermined by the former owners of Liverpool.
He will always have that worry and ultimately, Liverpool are a business run by people who have experience running sports businesses. Of course they want success, but they are also looking for profits.
Benitez would not go back to Anfield in a million years if he thought he was going to be restricted as the manager of the club in any capacity.
Well, bad news Rafa because that change is already taking place, it’s just fortunate for Liverpool and their fans that they have a manager getting the very best of the current situation.
Liverpool have made a change in their attempts to become a business which breaks even and produces a profit each season.
The days of spending tens of millions, of capturing Fernando Torres, signing Xabi Alonso and spending a ton of money signing players like Suso for the Development Squad are all but over.
If Benitez is thinking of going back any time soon or maybe sniffing around when trouble piles up for Brendan Rodgers in a few years then this situation is not going to have changed.
For the immediate future at Liverpool it’s going to be a case of the manager being told what he can have to accomplish his targets as opposed to stating what he needs to make sure a top four place and domestic silverware arrives regularly.
In Rodgers Liverpool have a boss who can get the very best out of his first team squad, the youth teams and sign players sensibly and efficiently.
In Benitez they have a potential future boss who wants a Ferguson or Wenger style role at a club which is becoming more about shared roles and reponsibilities, which is not something the Spaniard would enjoy.
Do you think Rafa will be put off by foreign owners?
image: © etyek