There comes a time in everybody’s life when you just can’t do what you used to be able to do.
For some of us it is not being able to run faster than your kids, for others it’s not being able to touch your toes.
For Rafa Benitez it is not being able to manage in the Premier League.
Now before I go on, I would like to say that he is the right manager, but at the wrong time.
At the right time his management would be the cherry on the top, the final piece in the jigsaw. At the moment he is contributing to our club becoming a jigsaw – broken and in pieces.
I don’t subscribe to him being this amazing manager like some people on here do. I think he was at his best when he tried to keep us up the first time round. At first it was amazing to have a manager who had won trophies with a great Liverpool team who contained top class players. In that first season we became a better team and nearly stayed up. However, since then it’s been pretty average in my opinion.
The championship winning season was lucky to say the least, as Brighton imploded and Huddersfield ran out of steam. Many teams came to SJP and did well. It was only our away form that took us up and it was obvious then that there was no effective plan for home games.
Fast forward to this season and nothing has changed. We are still trying to play on the break against teams who come and wipe the floor with us. At this point let’s just look at Brighton and Huddersfield, who are small clubs with players no better than ours, but with more adaptable managers in my opinion.
On Saturday Brighton picked up a point at home to in-form Burnley and Huddersfield have hammered Watford 4-1 away from home. Watford! The same team who could have had six against us. At home!!! We have lost yet again and are now in the bottom three.
Anybody who watches the game will see a side totally lacking confidence without a clue about how to stick together or play together as a team. I wonder how they feel when they are constantly reminded about how substandard they are and how their manager was disappointed not to replace half of them in the summer.
Well I know the answer to that – they demonstrate it every Saturday.
So what’s the answer?
At the moment I don’t think there is an answer. I think Rafa is going to get lucky and get away with his poor management of the team because of the ongoing sale fiasco. I think one way or another he is going to get the chance to buy his way out of trouble rather than manage his way out of it. But ultimately he hasn’t done anywhere near enough to be lauded the way he is.
Rafa Benitez has a similar record to Pardew and Carver and the bus driver in the EPL and his team in the championship were nowhere near as entertaining as Hughton’s.
My worry is that he has adopted the mindset of “I told you we needed new players” rather than trying to get the best out of them, despite what he says.
Can Mitrovic really only come on in the last minute when the game is lost?
Has he ever heard of 3-5-2?
Does Diame really deserve to play?
Not impressed Rafa. Not impressed at all.