The 53-year-old insisted he harboured no hard feelings towards his former club as his new side took apart the Nerazzurri in Naples
Both Benitez and Inter boss Walter Mazzarri were facing their former employers and although the Nerazzurri boss was afforded a generous reception in Naples, it was the Spaniard who was left smiling at the final whistle.
“I have many friends at Inter,” Benitez explained to Sky Sport Italia after the game.
“The facts speak for my history there and I have only joy in seeing my team win an important match.
“The Champions League exit was done with our heads held very high, so I expected this performance. Clearly it is different, we played against a great side and did very well.”
The midfield trio of Lorenzo Insigne, Jose Callejon and Dries Mertens tormented the Nerazzuri all evening and the former Chelsea boss lauded the influence of his creative contingent.
“All three [Insigne, Callejon and Mertens] have the freedom to change position of they want to,” the 53-year-old explained.
“As long a they then do the defensive work too, they are able to do what they want in attack.
“Of course we can still improve. The idea is to keep the ball, but at times there are mistakes and it can put the defence under pressure.
“I told Cristian Maggio it should’ve been Lorenzo [Insigne, to take the penalty], but Pandev was quick to take it and we didn’t have time to get the message across.”