By Pete Wilson
1 June 2010
The European managerial merry-go-round cranked into a higher gear this morning as Internazionale prepared themselves for a formal rejection of their overtures to England’s manager Fabio Capello. The Inter president, Massimo Moratti, has made it clear in recent days that he wanted to talk to Capello about succeeding Jose Mourinho.
It is believed Moratti thought he had an outside chance at best, although he was pleased Capello did not immediately knock back the suggestion of a move. In an interview in Italy, Moratti talked about various options, and said of Capello: “Capello is one of the candidates and he certainly has a good record.”
The situation is fluid, however, and Capello is now almost certain to commit himself to England to 2012, meaning Moratti has changed targets and will now explore the possibility of hiring Liverpool’s Rafa Benitez, with one eye on the capture of the club’s Spanish striker, Fernando Torres, at some point in the near future.
Moratti appears to be engaging in a tactical approach for Benitez that would involve the Spaniard making a “unilateral” decision to leave, rather than being poached by Inter. If Benitez left of his own accord, then Inter would not have to pay compensation, and nor would Liverpool have find £16m for Benitez’s pay-off.
“Benitez is a manager I have always considered very good, but for the moment he is engaged,” Moratti says, hinting that the nature of Benitez’s contract at Anfield – which has four years left to run – could be a stumbling block.