Benitez wants to move forward, win trophies
Rafael Benitez does not believe the Chelsea fans should be opposed to his appointment, despite the run-ins he had with the club when Liverpool manager. The Spaniard has been named as interim coach at Stamford Bridge until the end of the season following the departure of Roberto Di Matteo.
Benitez had a number of UEFA Champions League showdowns with Jose Mourinho's Chelsea when Liverpool manager and some of his comments at the time antagonised the Blues fans. But he said at his unveiling today: "I want to be honest, if I say this or that, I have to analyse the context.
"We were playing against Chelsea in the semi-finals of the Champions League. If I am a fan I want to see the manager fighting for my club. I don't see this as a lack of respect for Chelsea's fans, just a manager defending his team."
He added: "I like to do things in the right way for the fans. The fans and manager want to win every single game, nobody wants to win more than than fans and manager. At the end I think that they will be pleased."
Benitez, who revealed he had not yet met personally with owner Roman Abramovich, also claimed he was not concerned about only being offered a seven-month contract. He said: "For me the most important thing is I am here because I want to be here. It's a massive club, a club which allows me to fight for trophies.
"I was looking for the right opportunity, I was looking for a top side who can fight for trophies. I don't care about the short-term (deal), what I have in my head is to win every game. We have five trophies to fight for. We will see what happens, in seven months we can win some trophies."
The former Inter Milan boss, who also strongly hinted John Terry would stay on as captain, said he was not put off by talk he is simply keeping the hot-seat warm for Pep Guardiola. "I have a very good relationship with Guardiola," he added. "He is a great manager, what will happen in future I don't know. When you analyse why go to a top side for seven months - it's because you can win trophies."
Asked if he thought he would still be in the job in a year's time, Benitez said: "If I do things properly I will be happy with trophies and then we will see."
Benitez said he was impressed when he met the squad today. He said: "My experience is I went to the training session today, everything was fine, they worked really well, I didn't see any problems."
On Fernando Torres, whom he worked with at Liverpool, he said: "I was talking with him like the other players and his attitude was really good."