Rafael Benitez says he is at Chelsea to win trophies after taking over from Roberto Di Matteo until the end of the season.
Italian Di Matteo was sacked by Roman Abramovich after a 3-0 defeat to Juventus on Tuesday, a result which left European Cup winners Chelsea on the brink of Champions League elimination.
Benitez, recruited as interim manager, hailed the west London side as a ‘massive club’ during his unveiling, and said he took the job to add more silverware to the Stamford Bridge trophy cabinet.
“I am here because I want to be here, at a massive club that allows me to fight for trophies,” Benitez said.
“I don’t care about short term. At this moment I am here – I got the job. I have more desire and hunger to win trophies than before.”
Benitez also denied disrespecting Chelsea during his time in charge of Liverpool, claiming any fan would want see the manager defend the interests of their club.
“We were playing against Chelsea in the semi-finals of the Champions League,” he said.
“If I was a fan I’d like to see my manager fighting to win.
“I don’t see this as a lack of respect, I think it’s defending my club. Everyone has to do what they have to do.”
Benitez said Di Matteo did a ‘great job’ in winning the Champions League and FA Cup after taking over from Andre Villas-Boas last season, but knows positive results are the only guarantees in football.
“Di Matteo was doing a great job, but you can win your game and still be out (of the Champions League),” he said.
“It’s very simple. Winning games is a guarantee for everything. Winning games in a row means winning trophies. We have five competitions, five opportunities to do well.”
Benitez will reunite with striker Fernando Torres, who was sold to Chelsea for 50 million pounds by the Liverpool in January 2011.
“He is a top-class player. His attitude was really good. With the players and staff together I think we can win important things,” Benitez said.
And despite taking the role at a rival English Premier League side, Benitez feels the Liverpool fans will forgive him.
“I can guarantee that a lot of Liverpool fans will wish me all the best – not against Liverpool – but they will wish me all the best,” he said.
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