Register Login Live


Rafa Told Top-Four Or Bust

Rafa Benitez has been told to put all his eggs in Chelsea’s Premier League basket, in a do-or-die effort to finish the season in a top-four position.

The Spaniard was given his remit by Chelsea’s technical director, Michael Emanalo, who was acting as go-between for club owner, Roman Abramovich.

The conversation took place after Chelsea’s elimination from the Capital One Cup at the hands of Swansea, and their near death experience in the FA Cup at Brentford.

Benitez was told in no uncertain terms to prioritise a top-four finish, rather than worry about progress in the FA Cup or Europa League.

Chelsea need a Champions League spot next season for financial reasons, as well as to entice Rafa’s potential replacement.

After Pep Guardiola spurned Abramovich’s come-hither glances, the Russian turned his attentions to a high-profile list of second choices.

Jose Mourinho, Jurgen Klopp, Michael Laudrup and David Moyes are all on Roman's radar, and most of them could make Champions League football a clincher if they are approached.

And so Benitez- who is safe in the Stamford Bridge hot seat for now, in spite of Chelsea’s inconsistent results and the ongoing near fan revolt- accepts fourth place is his single Blue ambition.

 "All I can say is what I know: I have had meetings," Benitez said.

"We were talking about the situation and it's clear for me the priority is the top four and progressing as much as we can in the other competitions. My position is exactly the same: I will try to do my job as well as I can. I cannot lose my focus.

"The players are quite happy with the ways we are doing things, so that is the most positive thing," Champions League winner Benitez added.

"If I saw my players in training without conviction, I'd be worried. But they're happy. In the last 10 days we had a fantastic game against Arsenal, not such a good game against Swansea, and a 50:50 the other day [at Brentford].

“At the end of the season we will see, but I have confidence in the team. The priority is the top four, very clear. But I will try and compete in the other competitions, too."


Top 5

Pirates Linked With Top Signings – How Could They Line Up…

40 Jul 02, 2020 07:00 PM in Orlando Pirates

The 10 Richest Footballers In The World

11 May 20, 2020 08:32 PM in Messi/Ronaldo/Neymar Watch

Mido, Chiefs & Downs – Why A League Medal Is Unlikely  

93 Jul 03, 2020 11:07 AM in Mamelodi Sundowns

11 Footballers Who Went Broke

22 Jun 10, 2020 07:15 PM in World News

Ex-Chiefs Striker's Club Speaks Out

13 Jul 03, 2020 10:03 AM in PSL

Shaba Vs Yeye: Who Had The Hottest Cars Through The Years?

6 Jul 04, 2020 10:42 AM in Stars & Their Cars

Lorch Vs Billiat: Who Had The Hottest Million Rand Car Upgrade?

7 Jul 02, 2020 03:54 PM in Stars & Their Cars

Pirates Linked With Top Signings – How Could They Line Up…

40 Jul 02, 2020 07:00 PM in Orlando Pirates

Shock Messi Transfer Update

31 Jul 03, 2020 07:38 AM in Messi/Ronaldo/Neymar Watch

Official: Downs Announce Maluleka!

150 Jul 01, 2020 01:43 PM in Mamelodi Sundowns

10 Footballers Who Lied About Their Age

52 May 10, 2020 07:16 PM in International

Leopards Make Kapinga Decision Amid Downs Talk

26 Jul 02, 2020 02:19 PM in PSL

The Highest-Paid Footballers In The World Today

11 Mar 29, 2020 07:16 PM in Messi/Ronaldo/Neymar Watch