Real Madrid announced at a press conference on Monday that the club’s board is giving their full support to manager Rafa Benitez.
Rumors circulated that Benitez could be on the chopping block after Real’s embarrassing 4-0 loss at home to Barcelona in El Clasico over the weekend. But the board is standing by the 55-year-old Spanish manager.
“We analyzed the sporting situation and I want to inform you that our coach Rafa Benitez has our full support and our full confidence,” Florentino Perez told The Guardian after a board meeting Monday.
“Since January we deteriorated, that is obvious,” Perez said. “We choose Rafa in the confidence that he could sort it out. He has only been here a little while and you can’t fix everything overnight.
“We are confident that we have a great squad of magnificent players. The most important thing for us is the success of the team and institutional stability. I understand that the fans are annoyed about Saturday but I ask for their support for the players. I will always work to make sure that the supporters are the only owners of the club.”
Some fans went online after the loss and criticized Perez and asked for his resignation, something that the team president made clear he’s not going to do.
“I respect the fans,” Perez said. “That shows how demanding they are and I accept that. But I’d also like to say: ‘Florentino resign!’ that’s always started by the same people. A year ago we said the violent ultras sur would not come into the ground. Since then they have tried everything to intimidate me. It annoys me more that some papers help them out: they put up a banner against me, take a picture and then take it down. I also ask the fans to help us to make sure that these people can’t be protagonists and that they are not in the stadium. Their place is not in the Bernabeu.”