World news – UA – Football: Rafael Benitez escapes relegation to China after winning only three matches


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SHANGHAI: Rafael Benitez’s Dalian Pro avoided relegation from the Chinese Super League (CSL) on Thursday, October 22, despite winning just three times in 16 games this season

Champions League-winning coach breathed a sigh of relief after Dalian reversed a 2-1 first-leg deficit to beat Shijiazhuang Ever Bright 3-2 on aggregate

The former Liverpool and Real Madrid boss saw his side win 2-0 on the evening, just their third victory in the campaign disrupted by the coronavirus

« In this difficult situation, this difficult year, we have achieved something important for the young players and for the Wanda project (the owners of Dalian Pro), to stay in the Chinese Super League, » said the 60 year old Spanish player

The CSL has revamped its format due to the COVID-19 pandemic, playing the delayed campaign as two secure two-phase « bubbles »

In the first phase, Dalian won twice in 14 matches in his group, putting them in a relegation fight

Benitez, who led Liverpool to Champions League glory in 2005, has often said he has the youngest team in CSL

Former Napoli star Marek Hamsik was also missing for the must-see match, but he had former Newcastle United striker Salomon Rondon

« This competition has been very difficult because a knockout competition is very difficult for young players, » he said

« So realizing what we have accomplished is great news for them for the future, as they will have more experience now »

Dalian Pro, Chinese Super League, Rafael Benítez, Promotion and Relegation, Beijing Sinobo Guoan FC, China, Liverpool FC, Zhang Yuning, Newcastle United FC, SSC Napoli

News from the world – UA – Football: Rafael Benitez escapes relegation to China after winning only three matches



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