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Leagues: La Liga

Napoli expected to announce Rafa Benitez’s departure on Thursday

Napoli have announced a joint press conference to be held on Thursday with the club’s president Aurelio de Laurentiis and coach Rafa Benitez, where it is expected the Serie A side will announce the departure their head coach and his staff after the conclusion of the season.

This news will come as no surprise since Benitez has been earmarked as Carlo Ancelotti’s replacement at Real Madrid by club president Florentino Perez.

When asked to comment about Benitez’s seemingly imminent departure, Napoli’s president responded: “Within a day or a day and a half there will be important news, don’t worry.

“We’ll discuss the news when we announce it.”

Benitez, a Real Madrid fan, started his coaching career with the club’s youth team and served as Vicente del Bosque’s assistant with the first-team in 1994. The 55-year-old tactician has also coached Valencia, Liverpool, Inter Milan and Chelsea.

 

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After two years and two titles (the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italia), Benitez will return to Spain to fulfill his lifelong dream of managing Real Madrid.

But first, the Spanish tactician must prepare Napoli for their final Serie A match against Lazio, which has heavy implications towards the club’s Champions League qualification for next season.

The Azzurri will enter Sunday’s game knowing a win will secure third place and qualify the club for the Champions League play-off round in August, as only the top three qualify in Italy.

 

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