Report: Interim Manchester City role appeals to Rafa Benitez

The former Liverpool and Chelsea manager could be returning to the Premier League next season, according to the Daily Star.

Former Liverpool and Chelsea manager Rafa Benitez is prepared to take up an interim role at Manchester City according to a report in the Daily Star.

The Star claims that Manuel Pellegrini will be shown the door by City during the summer after a season which has seen them fail to stay in the title race and finish without silverware.

Benitez's contract at Napoli runs out at the end of the season and the Star quotes a source close to him, saying: "He has always wanted to work in the Premier League again because he thinks it's the best place to be.

"It would have to be the right offer for him and managing Manchester City appeals to him. It's something he would definitely be keen on."

It has been suggested that for the long term, City would like to appoint Pep Guardiola, whose Bayern Munich side reached the semi-finals of the Champions League last night with a 6-1 second leg win over Porto.

If the Star's report is correct, it does signal that City are moving towards a manager that has pedigree in European competition. 

Benitez's finest moment in management was masterminding Liverpool's 2005 Champions League win before taking the side to the final two years later, along with two successes in the UEFA Cup at Valencia and Chelsea.

Guardiola was twice a European Cup winner in charge of Barcelona, while under the current ownership at the Etihad Stadium they have yet to appoint a manager that was a proven winner in Europe. 

There is also the factor that Benitez has enough Premier League experience to keep the side in healthy position within the top four, which would be the absolute the minimum the club would require.

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