Real Madrid manager Rafa Benitez has a broken relationship with his big players, says Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard

Benitez has received a vote of confidence from Real president Florentino Perez just five months after taking the job at the Santiago Bernabeu

Rafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Steven Gerrard has admitted that Rafa Benitez’s future at Real Madrid looks bleak after receiving a “vote of confidence” from president Florentino Perez just a few months into his tenure as manager.

Perez publicly backed Benitez in a press conference on Monday night despite the 4-0 El Clasico defeat by Barcelona at the weekend. While the Spaniard will not be sacked anytime soon, his relationship with key figures in the squad such as Cristiano Ronaldo appears to be at breaking point, and Gerrard admits that his outlook doesn’t look good.

Gerrard played under Benitez’s tenure at Liverpool, with their crowning glory together coming in the 2005 Champions League success in Istanbul, but the current LA Galaxy midfielder suggested that Benitez’s days at the Santiago Bernabeu may be numbered already.

“He's had a vote confidence, they are usually deadly at Real Madrid, we'll just have to wait and see,” Gerrard said when speaking as a pundit on BT Sport's Champions League coverage on Tuesday night.

“Rafa's a good manager, for me, I just have to wonder what his relationship is like with the big players in the dressing room. It looks a bit broken at the moment, from the outside. Time will tell how long it lasts.

“It's difficult to put your finger on it, but Rafa's all about team, he's not really a fan of individual players, he's all about his philosophy as a team.

“But you've got to manage individuals different, especially at Real Madrid, it is all about Ronaldo and the big players. Rafa's got to adapt to them, rather than vice versa.”

Benitez appears to be struggling to bring the best out of Ronaldo this season, with the Portuguese scoring in just four of his last 13 matches. Given Ronaldo’s incredible run of scoring since arriving in Madrid in 2009, his sudden drop-off is alarming to say the least, and the revelation this week that he reportedly told his team-mates in the changing room that “either he [Benitez] goes or I go” has been cause for concern among Real supporters.

Both Perez and Benitez incurred the wrath of the fans on Saturday as they produced the white handkerchiefs that have been seen so often during Perez’s reign at the club, having overseen the appointment of 13 managers in his 15 years at the helm.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in