Benitez corrects rumours calling him a defensive coach

Madrid, June 4 (IANS) Real Madrid’s newly-appointed Rafael Benitez has defended his strategy, remarking that “people say I’m a defensive coach but we scored 104 goals at Napoli, a club record”.

Following the new coach’s emotional induction ceremony at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium on Wednesday, Benitez held his first press conference to answer the many pressing questions, reports Efe.

“Instead of speaking about the idea and the system today, I think I have to first explain my idea of work. We’ll determine later whether one player or another occupies a certain position. I’m not worried about playing one player or another as they’re all so good,” Benitez said, according to Real’s official website.

Benitez explained how he signed with Real, and admitted that he was not even thinking about Los Blancos until his very last match with Napoli was over.

Benitez recounted how he announced the end of his Italian journey during a press conference with Aurelio de Laurentiis, president of Napoli’s club, only after which did he contact his agent.

The new coach avoided talking about specific names, such as Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas, focusing instead on the ceremonious day: “It is a special day and a very emotional one. I’ve been working for many years to achieve success and return home, which was always one of my aims.

“A lot of memories came flooding back to me during the presentation. When we used to train in the Bernabeu.”

He further explained: “My general plan is to make the most of this great team and not get into the individual aspects today. I have an excellent and extremely professional squad of players and I’ll assess each of them regardless of their name.

“The team has to play at its best if they’re going to win and have a clear idea of what they want to achieve. When you’re in charge of a team with this much quality you have to attack, score goals and play well whenever possible,” Benitez added.

With regards to the support demonstrated by several players for dismissed coach Carlo Ancelotti, Benitez said, “I see that as a very positive thing… I’d like the same to happen to me whenever the day comes that I might have to leave.”

When asked about how it felt to be the 10th coach under Real president Florentino Perez, Benitez said, “Ten is a lucky number. With the demands of football nowadays it’s to be expected that there is a rush to win titles. Every team experiences managerial changes.”

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