Benitez shrugs off Mourinho reports

Rafael Benitez says rumours of Jose Mourinho returning to Chelsea will not distract him from the task of beating Basle.

Last Updated: 01/05/13 at 17:58 Post Comment

Benitez: Speaks to the press ahead of Chelsea's clash with Basle

Benitez: Speaks to the press ahead of Chelsea's clash with Basle

Rafael Benitez refused to respond to Jose Mourinho's desire to be loved as speculation intensifies that the self-titled 'Special One' is poised to return to Chelsea.

Interim boss Benitez was repeatedly asked about Real Madrid boss Mourinho's comments on Tuesday night, when the Portuguese declared "I want to be where people love me to be", immediately heightening suggestions a return to Stamford Bridge was imminent.

Benitez, who is under contract until the end of the season, repeatedly rebuffed his inquisitors, even when asked if he would like to succeed Mourinho at the Bernabeu.

"It's not my business," said Benitez, who was speaking ahead of Thursday night's Europa League semi-final second leg with Basle.

"I have to concentrate on my business, that is to beat Basle tomorrow."

Repeatedly Benitez declined to comment, preferring to focus on Thursday's clash with the Swiss champions as Chelsea, who lead 2-1 from the first leg, bid to advance to the May 15 final in Amsterdam.

He said: "It's not my business. I have to concentrate on this game. That's it. I think it's quite important."

Benitez refused to bite when asked whether it was disrespectful for Mourinho to comment on a job which is currently occupied, albeit temporarily.

"Each one [person] has his way," he said. "My way is concentrate on the next game, that's it."

The Europa League is one of two remaining targets for Chelsea; the other is qualifying for next season's Champions League by finishing in the Barclays Premier League top four.

Asked how necessary it is for Chelsea to reach the competition they won in 2012 in order to attract a leading manager, Benitez said: "It was important before and it's important now. "We know it's our priority and we'll try to do it. I like to think in a positive way. We will be there."

Like his manager, Juan Mata declined to comment on Mourinho.

"It's not our business or the players' business right now," the Spain forward said. "We just have to be focused about what we're playing for, which is a very important trophy for the club, to be third in the league and try to play in the Champions League. That's it. That's all I can say."

It is not inconceivable Benitez could stay on at Chelsea.

Asked to assess his compatriot, Mata said: "Rafa is a manager who has had great seasons in every club that he has worked.

"Since he came he just tried to do his best for the team. For me and for the players he's a great manager. "We're now at the end of the season trying to be in third position, which is our aim, and having the chance to win a trophy.

"Maybe the season will be good at the end and good for Rafa, as well."


Get £90 from your free £10 bet with Sky Bet if Chelsea win 3-0


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

F

ergie, aren't you supposed to make a beep beep noise when backing up like that?

simonthfc
Ferguson: Club made Moyes decision

S

ome of these are quality! Why you no like him F365?? :(

left right out
The, Erm, 'Best' Of Henry James Redknapp

W

e're our own worst enemy. We're suicidal in defence, and we may just get slaughtered on Sunday. Other than that, I am very pleased with my team.

bob the manc
Van Gaal: We can catch Chelsea

Footer 365

Shakhtar Donetsk striker Luiz Adriano claims he was racially abused during win over BATE Borisov

Luiz Adriano claims he was racially abused during Shakhtar Donestk’s 7-0 Champions League win at BATE Borisov.

Sky Bet League One: Bristol City held, by Bradford City Peterborough lose at Crewe

Bristol City were held by Bradford, but the 2-2 draw saw the Robins set a new club record for league games unbeaten.

Derby go top, Forest draw at Watford

Chris Martin's 81st-minute penalty sent Derby to the top of the league after the Rams grabbed a 1-0 win over Blackpool.

Mail Box

Are There Any Happy Fans Out There?

It seems as if Chelsea, West Ham and Southampton are the only content supporters right now. We have more doom and gloom for you. Who wants good news, eh..?

Is Van Gaal Just A Dutch Pardew?

A Mailbox of comparisons. Van Gaal is similar to Pardew, Wenger to Moyes, Van Persie to a spent force, and Pelle to a bloody gent. There's also plenty from last night...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property