FEW figures in Liverpool Football Club's distinguished history polarise opinion like Rafa Benitez. The Spaniard's shock return to management at Chelsea this week sent social media networks and internet messageboards into meltdown.
Some were left devastated by Benitez's choice of destination after two years out of work in the belief that the Londoners had struck gold, others had a chuckle at the prospect of a bizarre marriage of convenience going badly wrong.
Where Benitez is concerned, there doesn't seem to be any middle ground among Liverpool fans.
He is either a tactical genius whose Anfield reign went downhill due to circumstances completely beyond his control and was cruelly dismissed or a deeply flawed coach who ultimately paid the price for spending too much time picking fights he couldn't win.
Those in the first camp will rattle off the names of Xabi Alonso, Javier Mascherano, Fernando Torres, Daniel Agger, Martin Skrtel, Pepe Reina and Lucas Leiva to illustrate Benitez's expertise in the transfer market.
Others will issue a retort with the mention of flops such as Andriy Voronin, Antonio Nunez, Jan Kromkamp, Nabil El Zhar, Philipp Degen, Andrea Dossena and Alberto Aquilani.
Benitez is the man who gave Kopites one of the greatest nights of their life when Liverpool lifted the European Cup for a fifth time in Istanbul. He engineered the most dramatic fightback in football history and lifted the FA Cup a year later.
He led Liverpool to two Champions League finals in three seasons and transformed them into the top ranked club in Europe.
Under Benitez, the Reds finished fifth, third, third, fourth, second and seventh. He oversaw their best title challenge in two decades but fell agonisingly short of securing the Holy Grail.
His restructuring of the Academy, with the appointments of Frank McParland, Pep Segura and Rodolfo Borrell, is now reaping great rewards for the club.
Since his sacking in June 2010, many have pined for his return. Liverpool's fall from grace has only served to magnify the admiration those fans feel for the job he did.
There was anger in some quarters at the fact that he wasn't even granted an interview when Liverpool were looking to replace Kenny Dalglish last summer.
Others were simply relieved that Fenway Sports Group were looking forwards rather than back in the belief that Benitez had been responsible for his own demise after four trophyless campaigns.
Trying to manage a club when a civil war was raging with two owners who didn't speak to each other was tough, but there was a feeling he had accelerated the decline by alienating key players and with poor transfer dealings like replacing Alonso with Aquilani.
What is undeniable is that Benitez's last year at Anfield – coupled with his short stint at Inter Milan, where he also had a fractious relationship with the boardroom – tainted his reputation.
How else do you explain the fact that the man who twice won La Liga with Valencia and turned Djimi Traore into a European Cup winner was out of work for two years?
Benitez had limited his options by stating he wanted a Premier League job at a club capable of challenging for silverware. Tottenham would have fitted the bill back in the summer but they snubbed him and went for Andre Villas-Boas instead.
At 52, Benitez is hardly ancient but he's been fighting a perception that he's yesterday's man and had been left wondering when his chance would come.
Finally, it arrived this week – albeit on a short-term contract. It's a huge challenge made tougher by the hostile reception he's had from Chelsea fans. Both sides of the divide will be watching with interest.