Rafa Benitez is “open” to the idea of holding talks with Chelsea, according to the Daily Mail.

The Spaniard’s shock Newcastle United exit was announced on Monday, having failed to agree a new deal at St James’ Park.

Benitez proved to an unpopular Chelsea manager when he took charge in an interim role in 2012/13.

That’s despite winning the Europa League, thanks to a 2-1 win in the final against Benfica.

Many Blues supporters will not want to see him back, but this latest report suggests he wouldn’t turn down the role.

It is clear that Frank Lampard remains the overriding favourite to replace Maurizio Sarri, however, and it would now be a huge surprise if the Chelsea legend wasn’t in the Stamford Bridge hot-seat in the coming weeks.

Benitez reportedly had a “good relationship” with owner Roman Abramovich, though, despite the hostility towards him from many fans, due in part to his Liverpool past.

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