Rafa Benitez has not rejected Sampdoria’s initial approach and is believed to be prepared to begin talks over becoming their next Coach.
The recently-returned Serie A outfit are set to dispense with current tactician Beppe Iachini, having held preliminary talks with a number of different Coaches who the club’s owners believe would be better suited to building a long-term project around.
Mauricio Pochettino, who chose to remain with Espanyol, and Marco Giampaolo have both been approached, but sporting director Pasquale Sensibile’s meeting this week with Benitez’ representatives  is seen as an indication of the Genoa side’s first choice.
On from those talks that Sensibile described as leaving him ‘cautiously optimistic’, it is now believed that the Spaniard, who has won La Liga and the Champions League in his career, is willing to listen to what the club has to offer.
La Repubblica believe that Sensibile has now spoken with Benitez via phone, with an indication given to the former Liverpool and Inter boss that he would receive powers comparable to that of an English Premier League manager, rather than of a Serie A Coach. Benitez’ time at Inter was notably ended over a disagreement over transfer policy that he maintained was out of his hands.
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition  - £5,000 monthly.