Chelsea attacker puts Gary Neville on Valencia brink with super show
By Spain correspondent Miguel de Souza
A stunning debut from on-loan Chelsea wonderkid Charly Musonda has placed Gary Neville on the brink at Valenica.
Making his professional debut, Musonda created the only goal of game with a backheel as Real Betis beat Valencia 1-0 on Sunday afternoon to increase the pressure on the rookie English manager.
Neville is yet to win any of his nine league matches since taking his first manager’s job and must now wait on the decision of club chairwoman Layhoon Chan and sporting director Jesus Garcia Pitarch to see if he still has a job in the coming days.
As reported by Football Insider, Valencia have approached Rafael Benitez to ascertain his interest in replacing Neville and returning to the club for a second spell.
The 55-year-old Spaniard won two Spanish league titles and the Uefa Cup during a hugely successful three-year reign at the Mestalla from 2001 to 2004.
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Neville has endured a difficult time in Spain since being appointed as Valencia manager until the end of the season by Peter Lim, who has also invested in Salford City alongside the Neville brothers, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and Ryan Giggs.
The England assistant coach has not won in nine attempts in La Liga and, in 15 matches in all competitions since taking over in early December, Neville has steered Valencia to four wins, five draws and six defeats.
Musonda, 19, left Stamford Bridge in the final days of the January window as be became the latest in a long line of academy graduates to go out on loan.
The Belgium Under-21 international had been a regular for Chelsea in the Under-21 Premier League this season but has yet to figure for the senior team or at the highest level for any club until making his Betis bow on Sunday.
In other Chelsea news, Kurt Zouma is facing a battle to play again this season after suffering a serious knee injury in the club’s 1-1 draw against Manchester United on Sunday.