Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez is reportedly expected to arrive in Turin this summer, bringing with him a revolution of such magnitude, that it is promised to breathe new life into the Old Lady. Ahead of the Spaniard’s alleged move, this Juventino, much like a candidate in the current Prime Ministerial election race in the UK, will attempt to sway your opinion and assist me in setting up a hypothetical barricade at Aeroporto di Torino, preventing Mr Benitez and his transfer merry-go-round from taking over what is already a sinking ship.
Benitez - Turin bound?
The ex-Valencia manager has completed a staggering 76 signings in just six years at the helm of the Merseyside outfit, and has a solitary Champions League and a singular FA Cup success to show for it. His past signings read like a roll call of Celebrity Z- listers of the football world. Amongst his ‘master-stroke’ and notably big-money signings are the likes of Ryan Babel, Robbie Keane and Alberto Aquilani. Let us not even delve into the disastrous archives of Andrey Voronin and Co. Despite coming good with Fernando ‘El Nino’ Torres, Xabi Alonso and a handful of others, Rafa has demonstrated his ability to get the big decisions wrong when it comes to developing a well-rounded squad.
Football fans around the world don’t need telling that Liverpool are wholly reliant on their star pairing of Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres, a problem which falls at the doorstep of Benitez. Having been handed a transfer war-chest to build a squad capable of challenging for major honours, the closest Rafa has come is a very respectable second place behind rivals Manchester United in the Premier League last year. That aside, the Reds have now seen themselves fall into a similar position to Juve, certain to miss out on Champions League football next year but with the Europa League still in sight.
With a squad already brimming with unwanted baggage, appointing Mr Benitez has the potential to be the equivalent of turning off the life support for la Vecchia Signora. The one saving grace for Rafa, is his previous work at Valencia, and his ability to possibly broker deals to bring a number of his Liverpool stars with him. With two La Liga titles and a UEFA Cup to his name, the Spaniard is a talented coach, and if he could bring El Nino, Javier Mascherano and perhaps the whole Liverpool squad, if you read the papers, to Turin, then it might be a wise investment.
So, take a risk and hope that Rafa can bring about change and take the club forward. Or risk seeing him make the same mistakes as he has done in England, and turn Juventus into even more a disaster story than it already is? You decide.