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Page last updated at 13:46 GMT, Tuesday, 21 September 2010 14:46 UK

Rafael Benitez criticises Liverpool board

Rafael Benitez
Liverpool finished seventh in Benitez's last season in charge

Inter Milan manager Rafael Benitez has launched an attack on the hierarchy at former club Liverpool.

Benitez had a strained relationship with the boardroom at Anfield and left in the summer to join the Italian club.

"The last year at Liverpool I had directors who knew nothing about soccer and you couldn't talk about soccer with them," the 50-year-old Spaniard said.

"My relationship with [Inter Milan] president Massimo Moratti is good, he is a man who knows his soccer."

Benitez took over at Liverpool in June 2004 and led them to Champions League glory in 2005 and an FA Cup victory in 2006.

606: DEBATE

But the Premier League title eluded him and he could only lead the Reds to seventh in the top flight last season, meaning that they missed out on a lucrative place in the Champions League.

By the end of his tenure in June, Benitez appeared to have become frustrated at the lack of funds to bring in players with the club heavily in debt under the co-ownership of Americans Tom Hicks and George Gillett.

Benitez did not name names but Hicks, Gillett, club chairman Martin Broughton, managing director Christian Purslow and commercial director Ian Ayre sit on the club's five-man board.

Hicks and Gillett, who bought the Reds in February 2007, have angered many Liverpool fans with the way in which they have run the club.

And, although they have put the Merseysiders up for sale, no buyer has yet been found.

Broughton was hired to oversee the sale process in April 2010, with his arrival being at the request of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) as a condition for them extending a loan to Hicks and Gillett for a further six months.

However, a refinancing deadline of the club's £237.4m debt with RBS is approaching, with Hicks attempting to gain sole control of the club.



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see also
Benitez reign at Liverpool ends
03 Jun 10 |  Liverpool
Hicks to target Liverpool buyout
17 Sep 10 |  Liverpool
Owners put Liverpool up for sale
16 Apr 10 |  Liverpool


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