The former Valencia boss is a somewhat surprising name in the hat for the vacant managerial role at Rangers.
The 56-year-old spent three years working as Rafael Benitez’s assistant and Liverpool, helping the club triumph in the most unforeseen circumstances in Istanbul ’05. Understated, perhaps underrated, that The Reds have only won one piece of silverware since his 2007 departure cannot be pure coincidence.
However, ten years after departing on a sour note after falling out with Benitez, Ayestaran still lives just around the corner from his former partner, sharing the same Wirral postcode.
“At Liverpool, I loved it from day one. It’s the feeling of belonging to a club, to a community,” Ayestaran told the Liverpool Echo. “I was in Liverpool Lime Street and people were coming up to me, saying thank you, thank you for coming. I’m thinking ‘f***!”
Pako’s brief spell in charge of La Liga crisis club Valencia leaves rather fewer fond memories. Winning just three of his 12 games in charge, he posted the worst win ratio in the club’s history as white handkerchiefs and whistles rained down from above.
“I was in Valencia for many years and I’m only stopped in the street to be criticised and then I come here and they are saying thank you before I have even started,” he added.
However, if he desires community, an emotional connection via a historic family institution, then Rangers could be the ideal environment. Sky Sports claim that the Spaniard is interested in taking over from Mark Warburton although his mixed managerial career will hardly have too many supporters demanding his immediate appointment.
Nonetheless, it’s clear why Ayestaran would be enticed by the prospect of standing at the helm of one of the biggest communities in British football.