'Benitez? Good luck to Madrid fans' – Materazzi

EXCLUSIVE: The former Italy defender always expected the 55-year-old’s time at Napoli to go sour, having worked at Inter in 2010

By Rahul Bali

Former Inter defender Marco Materazzi has wished Real Madrid fans the best of luck with new coach Rafael Benitez.

The deposed European champions sacked Carlo Ancelotti at the end of the season and the Napoli boss was confirmed as his successor on Wednesday, despite leading the San Paolo club to fifth in Serie A this term.

Materazzi, now coaching Chennaiyin FC in India, worked with the ex-Liverpool manager briefly at San Siro after the Spaniard replaced Jose Mourinho at Inter, and does not hold much optimism for his time at the Bernabeu.

“I expected Napoli to have an ordinary season,” he told Goal.

“I was sayng that even when it seemed that things were going well. He’s going to Madrid, so good luck to him, but above all, good luck to Real Madrid supporters.”

Juventus and Barcelona meet in the Champions League final on Saturday and Materazzi has advised the Bianconeri to foul their opponents’ key man Lionel Messi and hope for the best against the Spanish side.

“In my opinion, you should pray and then commit a foul to stop him!

“Messi makes the difference more than any other play. If Juventus are able to limit his actions then they have every chance.

“In any case, we are speaking about a final, a one-off game, so anything can happen.”

Juve skipper Gianluigi Buffon has never won the European Cup but Materazzi feels that he does not need to add the trophy to his CV.

“Buffon will forever remain one of the biggest names and all of his awards speak for themselves.”

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