The Dutchman, who fell out with the Spaniard during their time together at Liverpool, has offered a sardonic response to the coach’s reported move to the Santiago Bernabeu


Ryan Babel has mocked Real Madrid’s seemingly imminent appointment of Rafa Benitez as their new coach, claiming that the former Liverpool boss will turn star forward Cristiano Ronaldo into “a great defender”.

Los Blancos sacked Carlo Ancelotti on Monday and are now set to turn to Benitez, who confirmed on Thursday that he will be parting company with current employers Napoli after the final round of the Serie A season, on Sunday.

Madrid’s move for Benitez has been the subject of much debate in the footballing world and now Babel, who played under the Spaniard at Liverpool, has had his say.

Benitez on his way to Real? He will make Ronaldo a great defender…

— Ryan Babel (@Ryanbabel) May 28, 2015

Babel was signed by Benitez for £11.5 million (€16m) in 2007 but managed only 65 starts in 146 appearances during his four seasons at Anfield before being sold by Kenny Dalglish in January 2011.

The 28-year-old, who now plays for Turkish side Kasimpasa, apologised to Benitez in 2010 after criticising the Spaniard on Twitter for giving him “no explanation” after he was left out of a matchday squad to face Stoke City.