Aston Villa Face Competition From Atletico Madrid For Rafael Benitez

Former Anfield boss could be on his way to the Estadio Vicente Calderón and not Villa Park.

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Atletico Madrid are going head-to-head with Aston Villa for the managerial services of Rafael Benitez.

The Times reports the former Liverpool boss has been made a ‘very attractive offer’ to move back to Spain and take the reigns at the Estadio Vicente Calderón.

He has been out of work since being sacked by Inter Milan after only six months and it is as yet unclear whether he will uproot his family from their Merseyside home.

Sources close to Benítez say he is determined not to rush into a decision and will proceed with plans to leave on a ten-day family holiday this morning.

Villa were also said to be interested in the 51-year-old amid concerns over manager Gerard Houllier’s health.

But owner Randy Lerner has not yet made a decision on Houllier’s role at the club and has not made an offer to Benitez.

Atletico’s approach raises the possibility of the Spaniard crossing swords once more with Jose Mourinho.

There is no love lost between the pair and working in the same city could raise tensions once more.

Benitez worked for Atletico’s neighbours Real in his early coaching career but often speaks highly of Los Rojiblancos.

“I have always had sympathy for Atlético Madrid, because, among other things, I have friends there and my father always liked Atlético,” Benítez said in February.

“He said he was going to support Atlético Madrid ahead of Real and I have always had much sympathy for them since.

“The team has always seemed spectacular, especially their fans.”

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