The Premier League fans are well known about Rafael Benitez, the Spanish manager. Especially Liverpool fans. I think the majority of football fans will be aware of the reason behind his popularity. Yes. The man behind the ‘Miracle of Istanbul‘. A match that was carved in the hearts of every Liverpool fan. It was a delightful night for the Reds in 2005 when the team miraculously came back after conceding three goals in the first half against AC Milan in the UEFA Champions League final. The mastermind behind the comeback was the Spaniard.
Years have passed. Now, in 2021 Rafa Benitez is managing Everton FC, the local, direct rivals of Liverpool. Everton betting should be tried once as the Spaniard leads the team. The famous Merseyside Derby, with a history of 118 years, is enough to measure the depth of their rivalry. He was appointed as the Manager of the Toffees in June 2021 after Carlo Ancelotti resigned from his position to join Real Madrid.
In June, the news of Rafa joining Everton was not taken well by the Liverpool fans. He is considered as one of the legends who have blessed the Reds with gameplay and tactics in the past. When the news was out, some Liverpool fans even reacted by saying that they would wipe out Rafa from their minds. Most of the fans were disappointed with his decision. Some of the fans even threatened him using some violent and disturbing methods.
Some Everton fans were also not pleased with his arrival because of his history with the club. When he was managing Liverpool, he called Everton ‘a small club’, which the Toffees did not take well.
But, right now, when nine matches are finished in the Premier League, the fans and the former players of the club are satisfied with the team’s performance. Currently, they are sitting eighth in the league with fourteen points. Under him, the team has only dropped total points in three matches. They have won four games and have drawn two. The most satisfying stat is that the team is currently in the top ten, and the chances for qualifying for Europe will be high.
His managing should be praised because the team is suffering from many injuries, and he did appreciable work with the squad that he got. Many football fans and pundits heavily criticised his appointment. But, right now, everyone is surprised by the start that he has with Everton.
Last season, under Ancelotti, the team finished 10th with 59 points. The team will look to improve their position this season, and the main target will be to at least qualify for the Europa League.
Everton Legend Neville Southall praised Rafa for what he has done and admitted that the fans are pleasantly surprised.