News today that Rafa Benitez tried to bring Didi Hamann to Newcastle United as his assistant but the former German midfielder turned him down.

Hamann was signed by Kenny Dalglish for Newcastle in 1998 but after just one promising season, he deserted the club and joined Gerard Houllier at Liverpool.

Staying on until 2006, the final two years under a certain Rafa Benitez, before leaving at the age of 33 for Bolton (who he never played a game for) before quickly moving on to Manchester City.

In an interview on Saturday with Henry Winter of The Times, Didi Hamann has been ranting about the state of English football.

Breaking off from that subject to talk about his own situation, Hamann revealed he wants to be his own boss and get back into football management despite failing at Stockport.

Due to that, Did Hamann says that it was ‘with a heavy heart’ he gave up the chance to be assistant to Rafa Benitez this summer.

Presumably this was once Rafa knew Fabio Pecchia was leaving and before appointing Mikel Antia.

Didi Hamann talking to The Times:

“Rafa (Benítez) asked me to be his assistant at Newcastle which I turned down with a heavy heart.”

Didi Hamann on the state of English football:

“People in England are p***** off. England fans are p***** off because the team’s underperforming.

“Many fans of most teams — well, maybe not Leicester fans — are p***** off because they can’t go to the games anymore because they can’t afford the tickets.

“The only ones laughing are the players and the agents. It’s a poisonous scenario. Football should bring football together.

“You see the Ireland fans and Northern Ireland fans laughing with the French police and it’s heart-warming. This is what football should be about. In England, football divides.