Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez has snubbed the Merseyside clubs initial £12million offer on a new deal at Anfield, with the former Valencia coach understood to be holding out for parity in financial terms with the other manager’s of the ‘Big Four’ clubs in the Premier League, according to The News of the World.
The initial offer was believed to be a two-year extension to Benitez’s current contract at Liverpool, which runs out in 2010, with his annual salary to rise from £3.5million to just under £4million for the remainder of his time at the Reds.
However, Benitez has turned down this offer, with the Spaniard wanting his new deal to match those of Arsene Wenger at Arsenal and Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson, who both reportedly earn in the region of £4.5million a year.
American co-owner’s Tom Hicks and George Gillett are arguing that Benitez has not won a trophy for Liverpool since his last contract renewal in 2006, with the wages Benitez is demanding proving to be a major stumbling block in thrashing out a deal to extend his four-year stay on the Red half of Merseyside.
Benitez has always insisted that he wishes to remain at Anfield and is understood to want a five-year deal at Liverpool, but his initial refusal at the two-year contract on offer, will alert La Liga Champions Real Madrid, who want to bring Benitez back to Spain at the Bernabeu. Where the Spaniard started his coaching career spending nine-years in charge of the Real Madrid youth and B teams.