Benitez slams Liverpool owners


ROME, September 21 – Rafael Benitez on Tuesday launched a verbal attack on his former employers at Liverpool, accusing them of understanding nothing about football.The Spaniard endured a fractious relationship with the club’s American co-owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett, frequently declaring his dissatisfaction with the lack of transfer funds at his disposal.

He left Anfield for Inter Milan in the summer, after guiding Liverpool to a disappointing seventh-place finish in the Premier League, and said he had a much better relationship with Inter president Massimo Moratti.

"Moratti understands football, and that’s important," said Benitez.

"During my last year at Liverpool, I couldn’t do that (talk about football) because they didn’t know anything about it."

Benitez also indirectly criticised Palermo president Maurizio Zamparini after he claimed his team had been denied four penalties in their 2-1 defeat by Inter at the weekend.

"I come from England, and over there the presidents don’t talk as much," said the former Valencia coach.

"But I’m beginning to understand how it works in Italy. We’re getting close to Roma-Inter (on Saturday) and Juventus-Inter (October 3), so it’s normal that there are these kind of polemics."

Benitez was reacting to a question from a journalist who asked him to respond to Zamparini’s criticisms of the referee in Inter’s victory at Palermo on Sunday.

"As a coach, I can tell you that we had 17 shots at goal during the game," said Benitez, attempting to draw attention towards his side’s performance.