Former Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez excited by Napoli challenge
Tuesday 28 May 2013
Rafael Benitez paid tribute to the Napoli fans after he was confirmed as the club's new manager.
The former Chelsea interim boss signed a two-year deal and will replace Walter Mazzarri, who has moved to Inter Milan.
Benitez led the Blues to third place in the Barclays Premier League and won the Europa League after he was appointed manager in November, following the sacking of Roberto Di Matteo.
Despite his success, the Spaniard struggled to win over a section of the Chelsea supporters during his time in charge at Stamford Bridge.
Benitez is hopeful of a better relationship with the Napoli fans and is confident of bringing further success to a side who were second last season - their best finish in Serie A since winning the Scudetto in 1990.
"Now that the agreement is confirmed, I can say I am very happy and very satisfied for having committed to a great club with an illustrious heritage like Napoli," he said on his official website, http://www.rafabenitez.com. "I understand the history of the city and how the club forms a fundamental part of the culture and traditions of Naples.
"I must confess that I am extremely excited because I can share my passion for football with the fans of Napoli; it is proven that they are very, very special. "
"I look forward to experiencing each and every one of the fans of Napoli and their strong support for this project that we will begin.
"I'm happy to become a member of that great family of Naples and thus we can share the triumphs together. We will begin from the start as we mean to go on and we will fight from the beginning to achieve success for the fans of SSC Napoli."
Benitez also confirmed that fitness coach Francisco de Miguel Moreno and goalkeeping coach Vicente Javier Valero Berchili, who were both part of his backroom team at Liverpool, Inter Milan and Chelsea will join him once again.
Benitez will begin his new job in July and Napoli were delighted with their acquisition.
"Rafa Benitez is the new coach of Napoli," read a statement on http://www.sscnapoli.it.
"The agreement was signed today in London.
"SSC Napoli is happy to welcome a coach so prestigious in their own family. A welcome also to his collaborators."
The news was first broken by club president Aurelio de Laurentiis, who announced the signing on his verified Twitter feed.
De Laurentiis posted a picture of himself shaking hands with Benitez, and wrote: "Rafa Benitez is the new coach of Napoli. A great man with international experience. A leader."
The appointment ends the mounting speculation over the 53-year-old's future after he was linked with the vacancies at Real Madrid and Stoke.
Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts
Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested
George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios
Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?
Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets
Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination
I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title
Latest in Sport
'Adel Taarabt is about three stone overweight. I can't pick him' - Harry Redknapp
Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
Arsenal vs Hull: Gary Lineker and Piers Morgan lead criticism of Arsene Wenger after 'uncomfortable' interview with Jacqui Oatley
QPR vs Liverpool match report: Liverpool snatch victory in seven late minutes of madness
West Ham manager Sam Allardyce calm over lack of new contract
- 1 Indian footballer Peter Biaksangzuala dies after injuring spine doing somersault celebration
- 3 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 5 Lynda Bellingham dead: Loose Women presenter dies after battle with colon cancer
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Sorry Judy Finnigan – Ched Evans is no less sickening than an alleyway rapist
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Workers 'could be forced to pay £5 a week' to get benefits
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver allegedly kicks gay couple off for kissing