West Ham: Rafael Benitez ‘on standby’ for job
West Ham have ‘already started sounding out’ possible replacements for manager David Moyes as an update emerges on the out-of-work Rafael Benitez.
The Lowdown: Moyes under-fire…
The Scotsman has been under-fire since his side succumbed to a 2-0 London derby defeat at the hands of Tottenham, with West Ham currently languishing inside the Premier League relegation zone.
There have been links to another under-pressure top flight coach in Chelsea boss Graham Potter among others with Moyes ultimately failing to get the very best out of his squad this season.
West Ham have spent £171 million since the 2022 summer transfer window opened, and while injuries have taken a toll, 18th can be considered seriously underperforming for last season’s Europa League semi-finalists.
The Latest: Benitez eyeing West Ham job…
According to a report in the paper edition of The Daily Mail (21 February, page 72), via West Ham Zone, former Liverpool boss Benitez is ‘on standby’ and ‘ready to take over’ if Moyes is sacked.
The outlet claims that, even if West Ham’s boss is safe for now, the Hammers board have ‘already started sounding out’ possible replacements.
The Verdict: Good option?
Benitez has plenty of experience at the top level and in England, most recently enduring a torrid mis-matched stint at Everton.
Bar his role with the Toffees, Chelsea’s ex-head coach has also enjoyed plenty of success, guiding the west Londoners to Europa League glory and of course a Champions League title with Liverpool (Transfermarkt).
While he has never won a first division in the UK, Benitez does in fact boast league titles in his trophy cabinet – having guided former club Valencia to multiple Spanish titles in the early 2000s.
Benitez is arguably the most decorated free agent out there and has experience steering Newcastle away from the drop on a shoe-string budget.
The credentials are certainly there and it will be interesting to see if West Ham take a punt so late in the season.