Liverpool will find it difficult to rekindle old flair: Benitez
London: Former Liverpool Football Club manager Rafael Benitez feels money being pumped into the English Premier League (EPL) is making life more difficult for the Reds to rekindle the glory days of the 1980s.
“When I arrived at Liverpool, the budget was 20 million pounds ($26.79 million) gross. When I left, it was 17 million pounds ($22.77 million), but still people said I must win the title, I must compete,” Benitez was quoted as saying by ESPNFC.
“(Manchester) United had around 50 million pounds ($66.98 million) more every year, but people said I had to compete against them every year. After, there was Chelsea,” he added.
Benitez bagged four trophies including the UEFA Champions League during his six-year stay at Liverpool.
“At that time, it was Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United. Now you have Manchester City and Tottenham, as well as PSG and the others. But it’s always been similar. There are massive clubs with massive amounts of money and Liverpool were always a little bit behind,” Benitez said.
“How can you win trophies? You have to create a good team with a great atmosphere and work hard and then you can get there. The reality is, the teams that have won the title, probably 90 per cent of the time, are the teams with the most money,” he added.
Benitez, who is now in charge of Newcastle United, admitted there was a time when he might have spent the rest of his career on Merseyside.
“In the days when David Moores and Rick Parry were in charge, it was really, really good. They were people who really understood football. They could really understand the fans and the manager and the players. Unfortunately, that board didn’t have the money to compete against the top sides and he (Moores) had to sell,” Benitez said.
“In terms of the way they were running the club, it was like a family, very close. I was quite confident. Then everything changed, they changed directors and owners and ran it more as a business rather than a football club. The team was improving but other teams came in with so much money and it was impossible,” he added.