Still in a job Rafa might be, but there is already a book on who will be the next Liverpool manager such is the bad run of form they are in.
Fernando Torres has now called for the club to make available funds to provide a “much more complete squad,” suggesting he is not totally happy with the current one. In fairness to the owners the money already spent has not been very wisely invested.
Its all well and good fans complaining he hasn’t had the money to compete in transfer market. Looking at his track record if the club had a £50 million transfer budget would you really trust the man to spend it? I don’t think I would.
Benitez has become the main talking point again across the football world since the midweek FA Cup defeat to Reading, with the issue being about whether or not he should be sacked.
In truth the situation at Liverpool in general is not great with the Americans and their lack of funds, their constant bickering, the new argument about renaming Anfield, dodgy emails, the new ground, etc.
Then we have the increasing erratic behaviour of Rafa Benitez in his aftermatch TV interviews and press conferences, the perfect referee incident, his bizarre interview after Wednesday night’s defeat, then yesterdays most recent press conference where he revealed a small piece of paper and read out a short list of facts in a strange manner.
The truth is that he is becoming a laughing stock.
It’s hard to see the Americans sacking him now unless the bad run continues to such a point that his position becomes totally untenable.
Either way he is costing or going to cost the club millions of pounds and for me the question is, when – not if – is the best time to sack him?
Some facts are (as Rafa likes to say), Liverpool are out of the title race, Champions League, the FA Cup and the League Cup, the early Champions League exist will have a financial impact on the club as it will cost them millions, millions they may well have already budgeted for!
They are still in the race for a Champions League spot for next season and still in the Europa League, more facts.
Would sacking Rafa now increase Liverpools chances of making next seasons Champions League? That is one question. Can they afford to risk not being in next seasons CL?
Other negative facts are on the evidence of Wednesdays performance has he still got the dressing room? Hard to say he has on that showing.
Today’s game at Stoke should be interesting, if he still has the players on side you should see a response.
One thing you can be sure off is that they were all his signings or players he chose to keep from the previous regime and none of them stood up in Gerrard and Torres’ absence on Wednesday and took responsibility.
He certainly dosen’t look to have the confidence of his captain Steven Gerrard, going back as far as the home game against Lyon, Gerrards body language towards Benitez has been telling for me.
Will Gerrard leave Anfield in the summer if Benitez is still there? I think he will.
The benefits of keeping him
With the financial troubles Liverpool are in, the amount of money his contract is worth and all his backroom staff – that would also probably have to go with him – would cost the club a fortune.
Also would a big name manager be prepared to take over such is the clubs finances and uncertainty over the yanks future plans?
With the exception of Gus Hiddink, who is available?
How much would it cost Liverpool to sack him? How much could it cost them to keep him? They are difficult questions to answer and I wouldn’t like to be in that situation.
I suppose it must come down to do you have confidence in him getting you into next seasons Champions League? If yes, the keep him til the end of the season and then sack him. If no, then sack him now.