Antonio Gómez

Antonio Gómez Pérez.
Antonio Gómez.

As a Player:
Real Madrid C.F
Sevilla F.C.
Albacete Balompié
Hércules C.F.
C.D. Toledo
La Roda C.F.

As a Coach:
Albacete Balompié (Youth team) 2006-2007
Albacete B España 2007-2009
Liverpool F.C. (Reserve  team) 2009-2010
Real Valladolid 2010-2011
Albacete Balompié 2011-2013

"To write about what Rafa Benitez has meant to me and what this professional maestro has contributed to my life is impossible to summarise in just a few lines. I met him when I was in the Real Madrid youth team and he was my coach. He made such a big impact on me, I liked his ways of working and his teaching of football so much, that when I got home after training, I made notes of the session and tactical team talks so that I had them down on paper to refer to. Documents and notes made as a youth influenced by his ‘Boss’ which I still use today.

Through his wisdom and his football we won the Copa del Rey against Barca in the U19 age group, a great memory for me thanks to the maestro. Under his guidance I learnt, matured and sealed my first professional contract with Real Madrid B, now Castilla, where I continued my education to progress to the first team.

After these few years as a professional, we parted company; he continued winning with other teams and with me following his work, evaluating it, and above all admiring it. On one occasion I can recall his friendliness: I was living at that time in Albacete, coaching the youth players and Valencia came to play us when Rafa was their coach. I stayed behind to meet him and say hello and to my pleasant surprise he invited us to his room to show us how he analysed the data for his squad especially demonstrating the Amisco program. This is the difference between Rafa Benitez and other coaches at his level. Through him, there are many coaches who have benefited from his expertise because he loves to teach and he enjoys the fact that others have learnt from his methods. Nowadays, many coaches strictly guard their knowledge and methods and as a result, in the world of football, there are so many people who admire him.

As years passed, 5 seasons at Albacete yet always keeping in touch, I received a call from Rafa Benitez asking me to work with him at Liverpool. This period at Liverpool was, for me, the most important professionally. Working with the best and led by the ‘Master’. There I discovered what it was to work at 100% intensity with dedication and conviction for a great club. Guided by the Manager Rafa Benitez, and involved in all aspects of one of the best clubs in the world, I had an unforgettable time. If there is anything that identifies Rafa Benitez it is his great capacity for work - meticulous, disciplined, methodical, ambitious and innovative. And always with one goal, to improve the team and raise performance to achieve their objectives.

All these qualities infected his staff so that they pulled together in the same direction. In summary, over these 25 years I have been proud that Rafa Benitez has been part of my professional and personal life and I hope that this relationship continues indefinitely".