Posts Tagged ‘Mourinho’

On December 23rd, after a little over six months at the helm, Rafa Benitez agreed to part ways with Inter Milan.  I’m not a fan of Inter but they did the right thing by getting rid of Benitez.  Inter is currently in seventh place in the standing, thirteen points behind leaders Milan, unacceptable.  That’s not reason enough to get rid of him.  He deserved to go because upon winning the FIFA Club World Cup he decided to give the owner an ultimatum.  He told Massimo Moratti that either the club back him with new signings or they should consider whether or not they wanted to keep him in charge.  Inter chose the latter and they decided that his services were no longer needed.

That didn't last long

Where does Benitez get off making these demands?  Did he not realize that this team has won the last four scudetti (the fifth one was handed to them)?  Did Benitez also forget that Inter just came off a season where they also won the Champions League and Coppa Italia?  Does this sound like a team that needs new signings?  Jose Mourinho was able to get this team to them top so why couldn’t Benitez make it work?  Hell, if Roberto Mancini can win a Scudetto, anyone can.  This team has five titles in the span of one year (Serie A, Coppa Italia, Supercoppa Italiana, Champions League and FIFA Club World Cup) but the players weren’t good enough for Rafa Benitez.

Proof anyone can win a Scudetto

Inter has 34 player on the roster.  How do you not win with the likes of Julio Cesar, Javier Zanetti, Lucio, Maicon, Cristian Chivu, Dejan Stankovic, Wesley Sneijder, Sulley Muntari, Esteban Cambiasso, Samuel Eto’o, Diego Milito and Goran Pandev?  Throw in youngsters Jonathan Biabiany (France), Philippe Coutinho (Brazil), and Davide Santon (Italy) and thats a pretty good team.  That’s only fifteen of the thirty-four players on this team.  Too bad Benitez had no use for Mario Balotelli (Manchester City) and Victor Obinna (West Ham), they could have really helped out this team.

Balotelli would've looked good in an Inter uniform....oh, wait

Who did he think he was going to sign?  I know the names of Dirk Kuyt, Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard were being thrown around in the summer but why should Inter have to pay that much money to improve a team that has won so much in recent years?  Why couldn’t Rafa Benitez make do with what he had?

Sure, Rafa Benitez won a Champions League with Liverpool in 2005, an FA Cup in 2006, and two La Liga titles but what has he done lately?  That sounds harsh but in today’s game you have to win now.  Unless you’re Sir Alex  Ferguson, Arsene Wenger or Jose Mourinho, what you’ve done in the past doesn’t mean a thing now.  Benitez left Liverpool in ruins and wanted to change Inter in his own image.  Rafa Benitez might have been able to talk Gillett and Hicks into buying every player he wanted but Massimo Moratti doesn’t work that way.  You don’t tell Massimo Moratti what to do.  He does what he wants to do.  Benitez didn’t understand that and it cost him his job.

Massimo Moratti

Do you know who I am?

Where does Rafa Benitez go from here?  His name has enough cache that he’ll be in the running for some major jobs but teams will also be leery of giving him too much authority after seeing what he did with Liverpool and his actions at Inter.  There’s talk of Liverpool being interested in Benitez but that probably just talk.  No way the new owners of Liverpool hand the reins back to the guy who ruined it in the first place.  Roy Hodgson won’t make it through the season as the Liverpool coach but I seriously doubt we’ll ever see Benitez there again.  He’d be better off going back to La Liga and trying to find a team to wrestle the league away from Barcelona and Real Madrid.

I thank Inter for giving him a shot because AC Milan was able to take advantage of his poor showing and find its way atop Serie A.  Thanks for the memories Rafa, we hardly knew ya.

This was a long time ago Rafa

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This Sunday the Inter – AC Milan Derby will take place.  It’s week two of return matches and both teams are fighting for the top spot in Serie A.  The first meeting of the season was won by Inter 4-0.  AC Milan was the “home” team that day.  Inter was clearly the better team that day.  They started the season like a machine and that’s why they’re still top of the table.  AC Milan was still trying to find it’s identity and had struggled through the preseason.  Now, Leonardo’s boys are red hot and, with a reborn Ronaldinho, they’ve been one of the hottest teams in the league. 

Gattuso will be on the case. Watch your ankles Inter.

Both lineups will see some pretty big changes from the first meeting.  AC Milan will have six changes while Inter will have six changes.  The changes for AC Milan will see a returning, vintage Dida and Beckham back for his second stint in Milan.  Youngsters like Abate and Antonini have shown great form for AC Milan and I don’t miss Oddo or Jankulovski.  These kids are going to be great one day.  Sure Pato is out but that’s not the biggest loss for Milan, it’s Nesta.  Yes, that Nesta.  I am a huge AC Milan fan but I have not liked Nesta since he’s gotten there.  He’s either been hurt or really bad.  Lately, he’s been classic Nesta.  The Nesta that was at Lazio.  

Inter’s biggest loss will be Eto’o, who is playing in the African Nations Cup.  Cameroon just qualified for the second round.  Mourinho is probably pissed.  Recently aquired Pandev will take the place of Eto’o.  Why did Lazio let this guy go?  They’ll regret it.  You don’t think Lazio, who is just above relegation, could use a guy like Pandev?

August 23, 2009 

AC Milan – Storari, Zambrotta, Nesta, Thiago Silva, Jankulovski, Gattuso, Pirlo, Flamini, Ronaldinho, Borriello, Pato 

Inter – Julio Cesar, Maicon, Lucio, Samuel, Chivu, Zanetti, Stankovic, Motta, Sneijder, Milito, Eto’o 

Probable Lineups – January 24, 2010 

Inter – Julio Cesar, Maicon, Lucio, Samuel, Santon, Zanetti, Cambiasso, Sneijder, Milito, Balotelli, Pandev 

AC Milan – Dida, Abate, Kaladze, Thiago Silva, Antonini, Gattuso, Pirlo, Ambrosini, Beckham, Ronaldinho, Borriello 

  

This game has a tie written all over it but I hope not.  Both teams are one and two in scoring and tied for first in defense.  AC Milan needs this game.  If they can win this game, they would be three points behind with one game to make up.  Beckham needs to do something in this game.  I saw him last week and he didn’t really add anything.  He was hardly going forward.  He nearly always passed backwards or sideways.  I know AC Milan has Antonini making runs up the right side but why not use Beckham?  

Ronaldinho will be the key to this game.  He’s found his touch.  Looks like someone wants to go to the World Cup in South Africa.  He’s running, passing and driving defenders crazy.  This is the Ronaldinho that was lighting it up for Barcelona.  We could’ve used him last year but at least he’s turned it around.  Remember Rivaldo?  That guy just couldn’t get it done and now he’s in Uzbekistan playing for Bunyodkor.  I saw Rivaldo play against the Pohang Steelers (K-League) in the Asian Champions League and he still looked like he didn’t care. What a waste. 

How's things in Uzbekistan?

Forza Milan!!!