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Wednesday 1 October 2014

Benitez: Roman's rule easier than Reds'

Published 22/11/2012 | 19:59

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Rafael Benitez insists he is keeping footballing matters on a priority

Rafael Benitez has declared working for Roman Abramovich would be "easier" than for George Gillett and Tom Hicks, despite admitting he had never even spoken to the Chelsea owner.

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Benitez had no fears about putting himself in the crosshairs of football's most demanding boss or that he had only been appointed manager on an interim basis. But it was the revelation of him having had no contact whatsoever with Abramovich that raised the most eyebrows.

"I will meet him today," Benitez said of Abramovich after being unveiled as the Russian's ninth manager in just over eight years. "The main thing is that I have spoken to Michael Emanalo, the technical director, and he's my link. I like to speak about football with him. That's my priority."

Roberto Di Matteo was the latest victim of Abramovich's trigger finger in the early hours of Wednesday morning but his replacement claimed it would be less stressful working for the Russian than under his former bosses at Liverpool.

Benitez's relationship with ousted Anfield chiefs Hicks and Gillett eventually led to his departure two years ago and he said: "If you have two bosses who aren't talking to each other, it's difficult.

"You want a striker and one of them says: 'I don't know...' This will be easier."

However, Benitez's lack of contact with Abramovich was telling, especially as he reportedly rejected the chance to become interim manager prior to Di Matteo's appointment in March. Despite being given the same terms this week, he signed on, having been out of the game for two years.

He said: "I don't care about short-term. I have to win every game. We have five trophies to fight for. I will try from day one.

"In football and life, you never know. If we win some trophies in seven months, everybody will be delighted."

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