Benitez side-steps De Gea questions as he is unveiled as Real Madrid boss
Rafael Benitez side-stepped questions over the imminent arrival of Manchester United keeper David De Gea as he was unveiled as the new Real Madrid boss.
Fresh reports in Spain this week have suggested that the deal to bring De Gea to Madrid is all-but complete, but the former Liverpool boss was in no mood to make transfer pronouncements as he took over from Carlo Ancelotti at the Bernabeu.
When asked about De Gea, Benitez responded: “I like the way you have tried to sneak that question under radar but I repeat we will evaluate everything in time and not name names today.”
He was also quizzed on rumours that his new club were weighing up a bid for unsettled Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling, with Spanish sources suggesting the player's agent has been keen to promote a possible move to Madrid for his client.
“We know Raheem very well, no secret, but he is not our player. So I will not talk about him today,” said the former Liverpool boss. “It is not the day for that.”
An emotional Benitez struggled to contain his delight at his first press conference as Real Madrid boss, as he stated: "It's an emotional day, a very special one.
"I have worked very hard to achieve success and return home, which was an aim of mine. The cycle is completed but I hope it lasts a long time. I hope things go well and we can win titles."
"The demand and the starting point is different with respect to when I was unveiled at Liverpool. When I arrived at Liverpool, I had three years to help the club become competitive.
"Here, from the first minute, we have to compete and make sure we're always at the top."