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Last Updated: Friday, 4 May 2007, 07:02 GMT 08:02 UK
Heighway fumes at 'crazy' Benitez
Steve Heighway with the 2007 FA Youth Cup
Heighway with the latest crop of Liverpool academy graduates
Former Liverpool academy coach Steve Heighway says manager Rafael Benitez's decision to assume control of the club's youth policy is "crazy".

Heighway left his job last week after 18 years in charge, following their FA Youth Cup win over Manchester United.

He told The Times: "Rafa is a terrific manager, but I think I'm the best coach of 17 and 18-year-olds in this club.

"But I no longer get the chance to do that. It's crazy, mad and it's to the detriment of the young players here."

606: DEBATE

Heighway, who oversaw the development of Michael Owen and Steven Gerrard, added: "If they are not working with the best coach of young players, then what is this football club doing?

"It's not an ego thing, but one thing I am absolutely sure about is that the best thing for the players is to be with me.

"My influence is being taken away too soon over the best players and I'm not convinced that what they are going to do is better for them.

"I would urge any football club to make sure the academy is not one of the areas the manager controls."

SEE ALSO
Heighway leaves Reds academy post
27 Apr 07 |  Liverpool


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