West Ham fans react on Twitter to Rafa Benitez's sacking

The Spaniard joined Real Madrid instead of West Ham in the summer...

It came down to just two hours.

Yes, David Sullivan claimed Rafa Benitez was two hours away from becoming West Ham United manager this summer.

That's according to quotes carried in the Daily Telegraph among others - and momentum at the time did seem to surge towards a Rafa appointment at Upton Park.

Real Madrid spoiled the party, of course, swooping in at the last minute to name the Spaniard as their own manager. Or did they only end up spoiling their own season?

West Ham are now thriving under Slaven Bilic, a former defender with an existing link with the Hammers, and Benitez has been sacked.

The Spaniard's departure seemed an inevitability from day one. A manager known for being cold with players was hired to lead a squad full of big egos. A manager known for favouring discipline and defensive organisation was hired to lead a club that required exciting, attacking football...

Ultimately, if Benitez wanted a good career move, he should have gone to West Ham. But then he wouldn't have been able to say the words 'I've managed Real Madrid.' Now, he can also say the words 'I've been sacked by Real Madrid' - and West Ham supporters have had plenty to say about his sacking on Twitter:

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