Reports coming in from Anfield suggest that one of the names vying to replace the purportedly outbound Pako Ayestaran as Rafa Benitez' Assistant Manager is Jose Mourinho.
Despite having worked together for the past 11 years, there has been a falling-out between the Spaniards, and speculation is rife whether Rafa will be looking for a henchperson for his 'Rafalution' at Anfield, or settle for taking a more hands-on approach in regards to the inner workings of the Liverpool first team with head coach Alex Miller.
Should Rafa take to the classifieds, one of the big names who might be interested in the job is reported to be Jose Mourinho, current manager at Stamford Bridge, or 'Chelski' to club faithful. "There aren't any bigger clubs in terms of history in the English Premier League," Mourinho was quoted as saying to our undercover ex-KGB informant on the Chelski payroll. "I have always admired Rafa from afar, and his squad rotation system is one of the few successful ones. I also tried to do the same a few years back, but Joe Cole and Salomon Kalou were the only players I could rotate. I just didn't have enough of a transfer budget to buy any good players." said the man who spent upwards of forty million Euro on veteran Ukrainian Andriy Shevchenko.
In years (2006 and 2007) that saw the transfers of both world class players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Fernando Torres, as well as highly versatile players such as Christian Wilhelmsson and Vincent Kompany; it is surprising that Mourinho was only able to buy Ukrainian Shevchenko and Frenchman Malouda, the rest of his signings being Bosman free transfers.
"Ah, ja, it is a cushy life here in London." opined the leading light among the Bosman transfers, German captain Michael Ballack. "I am one of the two or three highest paid footballers in England, if not the world, and half the time I don't have to play because of injury. Living here is a bit expensive though, the kids and the girlfriend are not used to shops like Harrods. Also the traffic is a bit worse than Munchen, but we are getting used to it." smiled the dark-haired German.
Chelsea oil baron and dictator Roman Abramovich, however, was not to be drawn about his Portuguese handyman's utlization of his transfer-pocketmoney. "Andriy is a God among men." was all he would say, staring off into the distance in an enigmatic manner.
Club captain John Terry was most emphatic on his opinions regarding his Manager's possible future as an understudy at Anfield. "I think it'd be a good career move," the talismanic England defender said. "Jose is a good tactician, but there's a lot he can learn about man-management, facial hair and the transfer market. I played FM07, for instance, and I managed to sign Ribery, Kaka and Miroslav Klose before the 06/07 season even got underway. Would I like to become player-manager of Chelski? Sure, why not."
Sentiments at Anfield, however, are mixed regarding the possible arrival of Mourinho.
"Wut's ee want ter coom 'ere fer?" snorted a prominent Reds' fan club member upon hearing of the speculation. "Oo's Raffer goin' ter bag oot when wee win the tooeetle, then?"
Reds' Pundit and Goal Machine Xabi Alonso didn't have much to add. "Si... ju know, Rafa don't need heem here. Everyone got to have a.. how you say.. nemesees? Someone to be enemy of, ju know." Succinctly put by the playmaker, and fullback John Arne Riise had nothing to add, his attention captured instead by a new line of pink Nike boots.
Rafa Benitez wasn't very eloquent on the subject, either. "I could probably," he commented to gathered journalists with a stroke of the goatee, "Teach him a thing or two."