As Chelsea celebrate and prepare to face Manchester United as the other English half of this years Champions League final, Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez is left to ponder what might have been.
Yet, could he have helped Chelsea into the final at the expense of his own Liverpool side?
Benitez openly criticised Chelsea striker Didier Drogba earlier this week for his inability to stay on his feet and his ability to mimic a dying swan. It was an obvious attempt at mind-games, trying to unsettle Drogba and influence referee Robert Rosetti. As we witnessed last night, it backfired spectacularly. Drogba inspired Chelsea to victory over the Reds with a solid, powerful performance and two extremely important goals. Could it have been the Liverpool gaffer’s criticism that spurred him to such a crucial display?
As Phil McNultey of BBC Sport says:
When Drogba is lying low he is best left alone. Benitez chose to deliver a verbal version of a poke with a sharp stick and Liverpool paid the price.
Both Liverpool and Benitez looked broken at the final whistle as their season ended. Benitez was left to ponder over what could have been had he left Chelsea’s sometimes slumbering beast lie.