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SportsSoccer

Rafa Benitez on his way out at Liverpool

One of the world's most notable coaches, Rafa Benitez, is about to lose his job.

The Liverpool manager is reportedly about to sign a buyout deal that would end his six-year run at Anfield.

Liverpool finished in seventh place in the English Premier League this season -- its worst campaign under Benitez, who led the team to the 2005 Champions League title. Just last year, the Reds finished runners-up behind Manchester United after losing only twice in 38 games.

Many of Liverpool's top players will feature for some of the favorites at this summer's World Cup: Fernando Torres (Spain), Steven Gerrard, Glen Johnson & Jaime Carragher (England), Javier Mascherano (Argentina) and Dirk Kuyt (Netherlands). Rumors have circulated that some of those players have failed to publicly support their manager, leading to his dismissal. Gerrard and Torres are highly sought transfer targets and may land elsewhere after the World Cup.

One of the teams rumored to want Benitez's services is Inter Milan, which just finished winning a treble (league, cup and Champions League titles), under Jose Mourinho, who departed soon thereafter to manage Real Madrid.

Benitez claimed a few weeks back that his intention was to serve the remaining four years of his contract, which he signed in March of 2009.

"My future is with Liverpool," he said. "I have four more years of contract and I want to succeed. I have no offer [from another club]. I hope to make a competitive team."

Guess not.

New York Sports