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Real Madrid manager and former Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho told Sky Sports: "I supported Roberto and I wished him to do well, and I will support the next Chelsea manager. I wish good luck to Benitez."
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said: "[The appointment and deal] is a surprise as well because Rafael Benitez is a guy who has a record. He is a manager of stature and it is a surprise he is appointed for such a short time. I am surprised as well he accepted that."
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers, a former member of the Chelsea coaching staff, said: "I felt for Robbie because he went in there and did a brilliant job. It is incredible you can win the Champions League and a domestic cup competition and find yourself out of a job."
Former Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo issued a statement this evening through the League Managers' Association:
"It was an honour for me to be appointed manager of a club that I loved playing for and one that is so close to my heart. I am extremely proud of the successes and trophies that we were able to bring to the club in recent months."
“Lifting Chelsea's first Champions League trophy, in Munich, was the best achievement in club history and without doubt the highlight of my career to date, both as a player and manager. It is a memory I will treasure for the rest of my life."
Chelsea Football Club has announced the appointment of Rafa Benitez as the club's interim manager until the end of the season.
The 52-year-old Spaniard will meet players at the club's Cobham training ground tomorrow, a statement said.
Guillem Balague is a Spanish football journalist and friend of Rafa Benitez:
Ian Herbert is a football journalist for the Independent who co-wrote Benitez's Euro 2012 column:
Tony Barrett is a football writer for the Times:
Sid Lowe, a football journalist based in Spain, says reported Chelsea target Pep Guardiola will not make a decision on his future "until new year at the earliest".
Guardiola has been taking a break from football since he left Barcelona at the end of last season.
Reports from the BBC and the Telegraph claim that former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is close to being appointed as the next manager of Chelsea.
His managerial record so far:
1995 - 2001: Real Valladolid, Osasuna, Extremadura, Tenerife.
Valencia 2001 - 2004: Two league titles and one UEFA Cup win.
Liverpool 2004 - 2010: One Champions League (2005), One FA Cup (2006), One UEFA Super Cup (2005), One Premier League second place finish (2009).
Inter 2010: Appointed in June 2010, he was sacked in December of the same year after a disappointing run of results.
Latest ITV News reports
Of the six managers that Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has appointed since Jose Mourinho, four have been sacked during their ninth month.
Roberto Di Matteo has become the latest in a line of Chelsea managers to leave the club under Roman Abramovich ownership