• Europa League

Benitez: Everyone will be happy if Chelsea finish fourth

ESPN staff
March 6, 2013
Rafa Benitez is hopeful of progression against Steaua Bucharest © PA Photos

Rafa Benitez believes fans, players and the club's hierarchy will all be happy if Chelsea can secure Champions League qualification before his contract comes to an end.

Benitez's current temporary deal with the Blues will terminate following the conclusion of the current campaign, with the Spaniard previously confirming that he will not stay on at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea chief executive Ron Gourlay said earlier this week that qualifying for next season's Champions League is the club's overriding ambition - and Benitez believes everyone will be content as long as he can achieve that aim.

"We will try to progress in every competition and the next game is the most important game," Benitez said, speaking ahead of Thursday's Europa League meeting with Steaua Bucharest. "Now we are here, to play in the Europa League, we will try to win.

"On Sunday we'll be at Old Trafford [to face Manchester United in the FA Cup] and afterwards we'll concentrate on West Ham, or whatever.

"We know that all the competitions are important and if we can finish in the top four, everybody will be happy."

Benitez dismissed suggestions he will rotate his squad for the match in Romania, in order to focus on the cup tie with the Blues' Premier League rivals at the weekend.

"As a manager you have to think about both [matches], but the priority is this one," Benitez said. "We'll try to put a very competitive team on the pitch and be sure that we can do a good job tomorrow.

"After we will think about United, but the main thing for us is to progress in this competition."

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