EXCLUSIVE: Rafa Benitez chasing Premier League return with West Ham
TEAMtalk can reveal that Rafa Benitez is hoping to move back to England before the end of the year and he is targeting Manuel Pellegrini’s job at West Ham.
The experienced Spaniard almost joined the Hammers in May 2018 before Pellegrini’s arrival and it was only a costly release clause in his Newcastle contract that prevented a deal going through.
The Spaniard, who left Newcastke in the summer, also came close to being named West Ham manager in 2015 before Real Madrid entered proceedings.
“We were two hours from getting Benitez and then Real came in,” co-owner David Sullivan told The Sun.
The 59-year-old is currently on a huge contract in China at Dalian Yifang, but his representatives are confident of getting him out of his deal.
Benitez is open to any job he deems big enough in the Premier League, but at the moment they believe West Ham is the best option – although his representatives are also looking at Arsenal and Everton as options.
Pellegrini’s future at West Ham remains far from assured having gone six games without a win, leaving the club currently languishing in 16th place in the Premier League.