Benitez wonders whether winning the competition reduced their competitive edge.
“Chelsea were a top side who had already won many trophies but were missing one,” said Benítez. “But then they won the Champions League, a massive achievement. It’s like: ‘OK, we have done the most difficult thing.’ And it changes a little bit the perception. It is normal.
“It changes the approach for the next competition. But if you want to stay at the maximum level for a while, you have to be competitive. That is the difficult thing, to manage the hunger of the players and the hunger of the staff.”
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The reputation of the Premier League means it is the most popular and one of the most watched leagues in the world.
Five English clubs will compete in the last sixteen of the Champions League for the first time ever as Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham face some difficult away matches.