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Football | FA Cup

Rafael Benitez © Action Images

Benitez blasts fans, confirms exit



Chelsea interim manager Rafael Benitez's patience with the club's fans finally snapped on Wednesday as he confirmed his intention to leave the club at the end of the season.

Benitez has been targeted by sections of the club's support ever since he was appointed as the successor to Roberto Di Matteo last November.

Chelsea beat Middlesbrough 2-0 on Wednesday to reach the FA Cup quarterfinals and they are also in the last 16 of the Europa League, but they have slipped to fourth place in the Premier League.

Benitez was only appointed on a temporary basis but he confirmed in an angry press conference that the abuse he has received from some of Chelsea's fans had prompted him to abandon his ambition to coach the team on a permanent basis.

"I'm disappointed with some fans. They have to support the team instead of wasting time making banners. They have to support the team," he said.

Benitez also appeared to take issue with the Chelsea management for insisting on the temporary nature of his employment.

"They (Chelsea) gave me the title of interim manager, which is a massive mistake. I am the manager and I will manage this club. The fans are not helping us," he said.

"I am a professional and I will do my job. At the end of the season I will leave."

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