Inter Milan president backs under-fire Rafael Benítez

rafael benitez
(Photo: Martin Caparrotta)

rafael benitez

Internazionale president Massimo Moratti has voiced his support for under-fire manager Rafael Benítez following the Italian side’s 1-0 Champions League win over FC Twente on Wednesday.

Moratti said: “We met in the locker room and we both had huge smiles on our face. We were happy, there was not much to say. We shook hands, which was worth more than words.”

Benítez is faced with the difficult task of emulating Jose Mourinho’s successful reign in the Italian capital and the former Liverpool boss’ side has already slumped to three league defeats and five draws in his opening 13 matches in Serie A.

Last weekend’s defeat away to mid-table Chievo meant Inter’s mid-week clash with FC Twente carried more significance after reports in Italy suggested the Spaniard could be sacked if his side did not win.

However, Moratti attempted to dampen the speculation last Sunday when he said: “We must try to get a good result because it is rather important.

“The coach and the squad must understand that Wednesday’s game is very important. Tired or otherwise, the game absolutely needs to be played with anger because otherwise we won’t go anywhere.”

Inter’s 1-0 success over Twente ensures their passage into the last 16 and afterwards Benítez was keen to emphasise the work ethic of his squad.

“It’s always important to win,” said Benítez. “We are now qualified. I think if a coach is in trouble it is because the team are in difficulties.

“We have seen the commitment, work effort of the players, today was a game where you could see that the team wanted to win. We had a goal and we tried the second, this is for me very important, because the end of this character makes the difference.”

And midfielder Esteban Cambiasso backed his manager after the victory. “This is a win for the coach, who has been giving his all, just like the rest of us, but not always getting what we deserve,” he said. “It’s a result for the whole Inter family who have undeservedly suffered so much.”

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