Chelsea FC: Why Rafa Should Be the Long-Term Manager

Greg Probert@@GregProbertFWContributor IIJanuary 2, 2013

NORWICH, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 26:  Rafael Benitez of Chelsea looks on during the Barclays Premier League match between Norwich City and Chelsea at Carrow Road on December 26, 2012 in Norwich, England.  (Photo by Jamie McDonald/Getty Images)
Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

I'm sure that a fair few Chelsea fans read the title of this piece and laughed their heads off.

Rafael Benitez is still struggling to win over a large number of Chelsea fans, but is this really anything to do with his qualities as a manager?

Yes, he insulted the club during his time as Liverpool manager, and unfortunately for Rafa this may have alienated him from certain fans on a permanent basis.

But emotional reasons aside, would it really be the worst thing if the Spaniard was to be named as Chelsea manager on a long-term deal?

Perhaps a large contributing factor to Chelsea fans' animosity towards Benitez's appointment is the way that club legend Roberto Di Matteo was treated and sacked earlier this season.

That didn't, and still doesn't, sit well with Blues fans, as is evident during the 16th minute of every Chelsea game, where Di Matteo's name is sung throughout the entire minute.

But isn't it time to move on from this now? What's done is done, and all the singing in the world is not going to get Di Matteo his job back.

Whether we like it or not, Benitez is Chelsea's manager, and it's time we all got behind him and the team as the season heats up.

All in all, Benitez has not done a bad job so far, and the side look a far stronger one than they did at the end of Di Matteo's reign.

If you were looking at criteria for a Chelsea manager, a tactically sound coach with a lot of Premier League experience would be right up there.

And there is no denying that Benitez fits the bill in that department.

So, if he continues the rest of the season as he has started, there isn't really much of a case to change another manager at the end of the season just for the sake of it.

Yes, there have been many names reportedly connected with the job, but do we have any reasons to believe they will be a success at Stamford Bridge?

Pep Guardiola is one name that has refused to go away following his amazing success at Barcelona.

But would this automatically mean he will have the same success with Chelsea in the Premier League?

Not really, considering he inherited one of them greatest squads ever assembled in football and has no experience of managing a top side in a league as competitive as the Premier League.

So his appointment is essentially a gamble, which could pay off or end up being another Andre Villas-Boas, and we all know how that ended up.

Obviously, the dream appointment for Chelsea fans would be the return of Jose Mourinho, but unfortunately, at the moment, this looks like a dream and not something that could realistically materialise.

So Chelsea fans' best bet is probably to try and forget Benitez's previous mistakes and get behind him and the team.

Because, really, the best manager is a winning manager, and Rafa Benitez could yet prove to be the answer to Chelsea's managerial merry-go-round.


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