Rafa Benitez’s nightmare at Celta de Vigo


By: Manu Tournoux

A few years ago, when we were debating the best coaches on the planet, the name of Rafael Benitez was never far away. The Spanish tactician, who has won titles everywhere with Valencia, Liverpool, Inter and Chelsea, has always had quite good odds. It must be said that his teams have always been particularly difficult to move, with tough defenses but also formidable offensive players.

It is therefore logical that when he arrived at Celta de Vigo last summer, the supporters of the Galician club were rubbing their hands. After several disappointing seasons, the team from the north-west of Spain saw a big name land on its bench. However, a few months later, the findings are terrible. Celta is thus in seventeenth place in La Liga, just two points ahead of the first relegated team.

A disastrous season

An almost shameful position for a club which, due to its squad and its status, should at least be comfortably installed in the middle of the table. If the figure of Luis Campos, advisor to the management, has already been criticized for a long time in Vigo, Benitez is now also starting to take his rank. Many criticize him for having an approach that is far too defensive, especially during matches. Many times this season, he has chosen to defend a short advantage by bringing in defenders… before it turns against him.

His team also displays quite obvious mental weaknesses, being unable to come back to the score when they are behind. And there is little reason to be optimistic for the rest of the season given what we have seen so far. I’m not going to resign. “I believe 100% in this project. I insist on the fact that we must build, my goal is to do things well”, the coach confided recently. But there is no doubt that on the supporters’ side, we clearly do not have the same vision of the situation…

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