Liverpool legend Dietmar Hamann backs Rafael Benítez for Chelsea job
Former Liverpool star Dietmar Hamann backs Rafael Benítez to succeed at Chelsea if appointed as Roberto Di Matteo's successor
Dietmar Hamann believes Rafael Benítez would be a success at Chelsea, with the former Liverpool manager favourite to be appointed as Roberto Di Matteo’s replacement.
The Blues sacked Di Matteo on Wednesday morning just hours after a 3-0 loss to Juventus in the Champions League and with the west London club winless in five games.
Benítez, who guided the Reds to Champions League and FA Cup glory during a six-year spell at Anfield, is the early bookmakers’ favourite to take charge at Stamford Bridge.
And Hamann believes the 52-year-old would be able to cope with the big personalities in the Chelsea dressing room if appointed.
“He’s a top-class manager with a fantastic track record,” Hamann told talkSPORT.
“When you look what he’s done in Spain, he’s the last person to win the La Liga title from Barcelona and Real Madrid, and he won the Uefa Cup there.
“He had very good success at Liverpool and only the Premier League title eluded him.”
He added: “If you look at his record, automatically he will have the respect of his players for what he’s done in the past. So, I don’t see any issues there.
“Yes, it is a powerful dressing room but maybe not as powerful as it was with Didier Drobga and Nicolas Anelka leaving.
“But he’s got the capabilities. He’s worked with the best players in the world over the past 10-12 years, and I don’t see any issues whatsoever.”
Benítez brought Fernando Torres to Liverpool in a £20m deal in 2007, with the former Atletico Madrid striker scoring 56 goals in 79 appearances under the Spanish manager.
And Hamann believes the former Valencia coach could help turn around Torres’ career at Chelsea if he were to succeed Di Matteo.
“I don’t know what the reasons are that Torres isn’t performing to the level he used to,” added Hamann.
“But Benítez brought Torres to Liverpool and it was his most successful spell.
“If Rafa can rekindle that, it will help Chelsea a great deal.”