Benitez full of respect for Ancelotti

04 October 2009 03:11
Rafael Benitez insists he will not be at war with the latest Chelsea manager, Carlo Ancelotti, claiming he considers the Italian a coaching "magician".[LNB] Benitez's verbal battles with former Blues boss Jose Mourinho were a major feature of domestic and European battles between the teams in previous years.[LNB] "I am looking forward to seeing him again, it will be an interesting meeting and I have great respect for him," said Benitez, who went head to head with Ancelotti in two Champions League finals for Liverpool when his rival was AC Milan coach.[LNB] "We have competed together at two Champions League finals and now for the first time in the league. He is a great manager, and hopefully we will meet again in another European final at the end of the season.[LNB] "He knows how to manage a top side, he had great experience at AC Milan and he is already doing a good job at Chelsea.[LNB] "He has not changed too much here, maybe the shape of the team a little but the style of football is similar and the people there are happy because he is winning games."[LNB] He added: "I have a lot of respect for Ancelotti, he is a nice man and wants to win. But we do respect each other.[LNB] "He has experience of working with top-class players, that is important. In Istanbul against us (in 2005) he was winning and we came back, but he was always working to change that situation.[LNB] "In Athens (in 2007) it was very close, but after they scored he was on top of things. As a manager he does not change very much, but that makes him a magician, someone who can alter very little but then produce a victory.[LNB] "When he was at AC Milan, he allowed me to study his work. I have a lot of respect for Milan, his team and the way they played."

Source: Eurosport