Spaniard’s one-time boss at Anfield feels it was never going to work out at the Bridge.
Former Liverpool managing director Christian Purslow has claimed that Rafa Benitez should never have been appointed as the Chelsea manager.
The Spaniard is currently enduing a tough time as the ‘interim’ head coach of the European champions, having been appointed to the role as a replacement for the sacked Roberto Di Matteo last November.
However Purslow, who was in charge at Anfield when the Spaniard left the Merseysiders by mutual consent in the summer of 2010, feels that Benitez was not the right man to take on such a demanding and complex role at Stamford Bridge.
“It doesn’t suit Rafa’s book,” Purslow said on BBC Radio 5 Live’s Sportsweek programme.
“There was a very dysfunctional ownership structure at Liverpool for that period which gave him disproportionate power, perhaps the most powerful contract in professional football for a manager, a contract that gave him much greater power than the normal manager.
“So I’ve got to say that when I saw him taking this job, going to a club where the reverse is true, on a temporary basis, no role in transfers, no total control, there wasn’t a fit.”
And, Purslow also believes that last week’s rant by Benitez against the Chelsea supporters in his post-match press conference after the club’s 2-0 win at Middlesbrough in the FA Cup was premeditated.
“I don’t think it was a rant, I think it was planned, because Rafa plans everything. All managers are tricky when they’re working with their executive team. They are used to being in charge, they want to be in charge,” said Purslow.
“Up until Tuesday I would say I’ve been quite surprised and impressed with the way he has kept a relatively low profile.
“He does have form in the media in terms of outbursts, particularly against employers – Valencia, Liverpool, Milan it all happened. But I’d say he’s been doing a pretty good job, slightly to my surprise.
“I think he probably cares about these issues too much and focuses on them too much.”
Benitez’s Chelsea currently sit in fourth place in the Premier League, five points clear of Arsenal but trailing London rivals Tottenham by two points in the race for an automatic qualification spot for the Champions League.
Spurs are managed by ex-Blues boss Andre Villas-Boas, who was sacked by Chelsea in February 2012.