6 instances when managers were booed by their own fans
Football fans describe themselves as the 12th man – an essential aspect of the team’s success. The role played by the fans in the beautiful game is immense. Through their actions performed in a game which include songs, ritual chants and banners, they motivate their side, intimidate the opposition, support the manager and also, at times, influence the referee’s decisions.In the context of the current season, the role of the fans vis-à-vis the manager becomes all the more magnified. In spite of suffering a number of defeats in the Premier League, Chelsea fans have never called for their boss’s head. Game after game, the fans appear to be by Jose Mourinho’s side, and that in current times is a great anomaly.However, not all football fans are so forgiving. There have been instances when fans have booed their own manager.
#1 Rafa Benitez gets a rough welcome at Chelsea
Rafael Benitez replaced Champions League winner Roberto Di Matteo as the Chelsea manager halfway through the 2012/13 season. His appointment did not go down well with Chelsea supporters who decided to welcome him in the roughest manner possible.
During his time at Liverpool, the Spaniard had some unflattering comments about the club and its fans. He had famously gone on record to state that he would never take the Chelsea job. Further, he even antagonized the Blues’ fans by undermining their passion and love for the club.
“We don’t need to give away flags for our fans to wave – our supporters are always there with their hearts, and that is all we need,” Benitez had said in 2007. “It’s the passion of the fans that helps to win matches – not flags.
“Chelsea is a big club with fantastic players, every manager wants to coach a such a big team,” the Spanish boss had said. “But I would never take that job, in respect for my former team at Liverpool, no matter what. For me, there is only club in England, and that’s Liverpool.”
All this came back to bite Benitez as he was unveiled as the interim manager for the side in a game against Manchester City. The fans booed him and carried huge banners depicting their feelings for the manager. The appointment of new managers always brings about a sense of optimism among the fans, but that was not the case with Benitez.
However, defying all odds, Rafael Benitez performed well with the club guiding the side to the Europa League title that season.