Rafa Benitez is reportedly targeting a return to management in the UK after telling friends that his next project will be in the Premier League.

Former Liverpool and Newcastle boss Benitez sparked rumours of a return to Europe after leaving his role in China as head coach at Dalian Professional.

The Spaniard has most frequently been rumoured with a move to Celtic, where Neil Lennon is under fire, or a return to Newcastle where he would replace the struggling Steve Bruce.

It is thought that several clubs in the UK and across Europe have contacted Benitez in recent weeks, with another of his former clubs Napoli also weighing up the future of Gennaro Gattuso.

Rafa Benitez left Newcastle last summer and now manages in China
Rafa Benitez is considering his future after leaving China

However, Sky Sports claim that Benitez is not desperate to land another job immediately, and is set to turn down jobs at Celtic and Newcastle.

He is also not keen on a return to Naples, and wants to return to his family home in the Wirral, with Sky also claiming that he has told those closest to him his next job will be back in the Premier League.

Celtic boss Lennon insisted last week that he would only leave Parkhead kicking and screaming despite calls from Bhoys fans for him to walk.

With Celtic now 19 points behind Rangers, Lennon was 'bitterly disappointed' as he blamed the ref for making 'the wrong decision'
Neil Lennon has struggled heavily at Celtic this season

The Northern Irishman said: "I won't walk away, absolutely not. I've put too much into this. Too much of my life. And a month ago we won the treble.

"We've lost two games in the league. Europe wasn't good enough and we're out of the League Cup. But we're human beings and we haven't played well for whatever reason.

"We can analyse it to death. Maybe no fans has had an adverse effect, I don't know. But they haven't reached the levels of last season by any stretch of the imagination.

"I haven't changed my procedures, my philosophy hasn't changed but for some reason too many haven't reached anywhere near their levels.

"If the club have to make a decision then they have to make a decision. You're asking the wrong guy about my position.

"I'm fed up answering it really. Everyone is interested in my job. You keep asking if I'm going to be here. I will be until I'm told otherwise.

"There have been many (fans who don't support me) like that since I got the job. But we've won five trophies out of six. Not bad."