By Ian Herbert
Friday, 23 April 2010
Rafael Benitez's representatives have put in
place a detailed framework with Juventus which would enable the
Spaniard to settle straight into a Serie A role should he part company
with Liverpool this summer.
No decision is expected on the Liverpool
manager's future for at least 10 days and developments both at Anfield
and the Bernabeu are likely to dictate whether he does find himself in
Turin's Stadio Olimpico, but a £4m a year salary, before tax, has been
agreed between Juventus and Benitez's agent Manuel Garcia Quilon,
according to reports in Italy yesterday.
Sources suggest that there is as yet no agreement
over whether Juventus would need to pay out the entire four years left
on Benitez's Liverpool contract or three years, with a one-year golden
handshake for Benitez.
But the prospect of
Benitez leaving Anfield is certainly strong enough for precise details
to have been outlined on which back-room staff Benitez would take with
him. Mauricio Pellegrino, Liverpool's first-team coach, Eduardo Macia,
one of Benitez's two first-team scouts, and Paco de Miguel, his
first-team fitness coach, are understood to be those who would move with
Benitez who, according to reports in Italy, has agreed to a reduction
in the list of staff he would bring to Turin from 12 to six.
It is understood that three Italians would join
Benitez's coaching entourage – Antonio Pintus, the West Ham fitness
coach brought to Britain by Gianluca Vialli, then at Chelsea, and who
joined Gianfranco Zola after a spell at Monaco, Mauro Pederzoli and
Amedeo Carboni – all of whom have connections with Benitez. Benitez
remains the overwhelming choice of the Italian club's power brokers to
replace Alberto Zaccheroni, now that Cesare Prandelli has made it clear
he does not intend to leave Fiorentina.
Que le contrat soit prêt n'a rien de surprenant. Que Rafa le signe m'étonnerait.