Everton owner Farhad Moshiri has praised Rafa Benitez for the job he did on Tyneside, pointing towards the success he achieved here while on “no budget”.
The new Toffees boss has caused a stir among supporters who have been openly hostile towards his surprise appointment due to his former Liverpool allegiances and “small club” dig at Everton back in 2007 – a comment they’ve certainly not forgotten.
However, Moshiri has decided to stick with his guns and appoint Benitez anyway, explaining just why he is the man for the job in a sales pitch to Blues fans on talkSPORT.
Here’s what he’s had to say, with him throwing a subtle dig Mike Ashley’s way when discussing the work he did at Newcastle despite a total lack of backing:
“He’s a professional, dedicated manager who gives his soul to every club that he has been to and you need to pick up professionals who are dedicated and give everything to their team.
“This man is in love with the city of Liverpool – not so much a particular club before he joined us.
“All the fans, and I am the biggest fan, will begin to appreciate the man he is. The man who will be first in, last out of Finch Farm, who gives everything.
“I mean, what is your criteria? Premier League experience, winning trophies, being dedicated, knowing the city and an ability to perform.
“Even at Newcastle, he worked on no budget. Coming from the Championship, finishing 10th, and an ability to come from Real Madrid and go to a lower division in the Premier League just shows a robust mentality.”
Benitez could be a quality signing for Everton if their supporters can get over his old Liverpool ties.
Several managers – including our own! – have crossed the divide for rival clubs and, although it is never a popular decision at first, football is a fickle game and positive results can sway opinions quickly.
With Benitez set to be handed a big budget and chance to boost and already talented playing squad, it’ll be a bitter pill to swallow for us Toon fans if Rafa turns them into the force we hoped to be with a takeover…