Jan Molby

Benitez will silence his Chelsea critics

Jan Molby

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Rafa Benitez is exactly what Chelsea need in the short term.

He will get them organised after some shambolic defensive displays in recent weeks.

Players under Rafa always know their job and their role, even if they don't particularly like it.

Over the years, his Liverpool side produced some incredible performances away from home, especially in Europe.

They controlled the game even without the ball because they were so well-organised - for example the away legs against Juventus and Chelsea in the 2005 Champions League.

That's pretty much the exact opposite of Chelsea's performance at Juve on Tuesday.

So he is the right man to stop the rot and make sure they stay in the top four and keep their place in next season's Champions League.

Another key factor is his relationship with Fernando Torres - Roman Abramovich is desperate to see his pet signing succeed.

Reports claim he rejected the chance to sign Falcao because of Torres, and even ordered Di Matteo to pick him.

Torres was fantastic at Liverpool under Benitez - so if he cannot get him scoring, nobody can.

I know the Chelsea fans haven't reacted well to Rafa's appointment, but a couple of positive results will change that.

They have games against Manchester City and Fulham coming up. Win both of those, and I don't think anyone will be too worried about what he said about the plastic flags when he was Liverpool manager.

Of course there was acrimony with Chelsea and Jose Mourinho, but that was during an intense rivalry between the clubs. Chelsea fans should remind themselves what a force he made Liverpool into.

The negativity has been strange. When Chelsea bought Fernando Torres, a player strongly identified with Liverpool, they saw it as a great triumph. Yet the signing of a manager beloved by Liverpool fans has provoked the opposite reaction.

Even so, from Rafa's point of view it is a great move. He may not be thrilled to be described as an 'interim' manager, but it's a great opportunity for him.

He will certainly back himself to improve Chelsea, and if he does so he has a great chance of getting the job full-time - especially if they fail to lure Pep Guardiola.

Even if Chelsea do let him go, it's not like there is any stigma attached to that. Every Chelsea manager gets sacked, and it has certainly not harmed the likes of Jose Mourinho or Carlo Ancelotti.

That short-termism will be a problem even if Chelsea to get Guardiola next summer.

Di Matteo and Andre Villas-Boas were both given a brief to change the team's style and move on the core of the squad - yet both were dispensed with at the first sign of trouble.

Roman Abramovich wants to change the way his team is perceived, but he is too impatient to let any manager see the job through.

Guardiola might get a little more time than those two, but there is no way he will be given the freedom and control he had at Barcelona.

The club's philosophy matched Guardiola's exactly, so it was a perfect position for him. I can guarantee it won't be as harmonious at Chelsea.

They might have the right sort of players for an attacking coach in Guardiola's mould, but as long as there is interference from the board room, it will be hard for any manager to make a long-term success of the Chelsea job.

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