Raul optimistic Benitez can thrive at Real

Former Spain striker Raul believes a "methodical" Rafael Benitez can prosper at Real Madrid.

Raul is backing Rafael Benitez to be a success at Real Madrid in a new era for the Liga giants.

Benitez was confirmed as Carlo Ancelotti's successor at Santiago Bernabeu earlier this month after ending his two-year tenure at Napoli.

The former Valencia coach will be under pressure to bring Barcelona back down to earth after the Catalan giants won the treble in the 2014-15 season.

Real legend Raul, now playing for New York Cosmos in the twilight of his career, believes Madrid-born Benitez can make his mark back in his homeland.

When asked about the decision to sack Ancelotti, Raul told Marca: "The club has to make decisions and those decisions have to be backed.

"We have to thank Ancelotti for the great job he did, but now we are all excited about a new era with a new manager. I believe you have to be optimistic. And hopefully we can carry off lots of trophies next season.

"He (Benitez) was the manager when I made my debut and played my only game for Real Madrid B, against Palamos. He is a very keen and methodical manager.

"He likes to have the whole squad ready and able to play. It was Benítez's dream to manage Real Madrid, and his successes at the other teams he has managed have eventually brought him to Real Madrid, and he will certainly build a very competitive and winning team."