Benitez to be the next horse on Madrid's coaching carousel
By Tyler Strauss
College Contributor Network
Another offseason, another coaching change at Real Madrid. This is the sort of thing we have come to expect from the Spanish giants, not really having much stability in anything and certainly not in their coaching hot seat.
Several prestigious managers have filled the role at the Santiago Bernabeu over the years, and it appears the next will be Rafa Benitez. While it seems a peculiar decision at first, there are several facets of the move that makes sense.
Rafa Benitez is a proven winner. The Spaniard collected two La Ligas at Valencia, a Champions League with Liverpool, two Europa League titles with Chelsea and Valencia, and two cup finals, with Liverpool and Napoli. Not a bad resume in the least.
Benitez is known as somewhat of a defensive manager. Although a Liverpool team coached by Benitez scored 119 goals in a season, the Spaniard typically sets his teams up with the No. 1 priority of defense. This is why I think there is a chance for success at the Bernabeu.
Madrid is set with an abundance of top talent, but little organization or fundamentals. This is where they ran into trouble in the Champions League and La Liga. They are a squad brimming with stars, but concede silly goals, and sometimes fail to score because of their lack of discipline. Benitez is the perfect man to balance and organize the team. There are players that need to learn defensive discipline, along with adding reinforcements to help balance the squad. A new goalkeeper will be brought in as well. Madrid will not concede as much next season.
So what about this move doesn't make sense?
Benitez is not a manager that caters to certain players, especially the way the Galacticos like to be handled. While at Chelsea, Rafa managed to alienate longtime captain and hero of the Blues, John Terry. And we see how that's working out as Terry played every minute in Chelsea's title winning campaign. At Napoli, he has failed to achieve any sort of substantial success, failing to break Juventus's reign at the top of the Serie A.
Furthermore, there was one manager who I thought would be the perfect signing for Madrid. Jurgen Klopp is not returning to Borussia Dortmund this season and the German would have been a steal for Madrid. His man management is brilliant and he would have been a perfect fit for getting the best out of Madrid's stars. However, Madrid passed on Klopp in favor of Benitez.
Now only time will tell if they made the right decision.
Tyler Strauss is a student at Fordham University. He currently interns at the New York Cosmos, and writes for their website. Tyler is also a contributor to many other soccer blogs such as CFCNet, ChelseaDaft, The Pride of London, and The Stamford Shed. He is seeking a career in the football (soccer) industry.