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Benitez has no regrets

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1 Benitez has no regrets on Fri Mar 13, 2009 12:08 pm

Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez insists he has no regrets regarding his outburst against Manchester United counterpart Sir Alex Ferguson.

Benitez launched an astonishing, scripted attack on Ferguson in the build-up to a 0-0 Premier League draw at Stoke in January as he suggested United enjoyed benefits from the fixture computer and match officials.

The rant was viewed to have backfired as, including the stalemate at the Britannia Stadium, Liverpool went four games in all competitions without a victory.

On Saturday lunchtime Benitez is to cross swords with Ferguson for the first time since the incident as his side travel to current leaders United hoping to keep faint title hopes alive by making inroads into the defending champions' seven-point cushion.

But ahead of the fixture, Benitez insists he has no regrets, saying: "It was the right time to say what I said. They were facts, it was the right moment.

"I do not regret saying anything, and it did not have any effect on results.

"It had no effect on us hitting the post in the last minute at Stoke, it had no influence on them winning their games in hand.

"I have not spoken to Sir Alex Ferguson since, I do not expect any response from him and I do have great respect for him as a manager.

"I do not believe that my remarks, facts not comments, has had any effect on the title race.

"They have won games in hand but I do not believe what I said had any impact on the situation at the top of the league."

Contract talks
Meanwhile, the Anfield boss is adamant that there is no two-week deadline on his future on Merseyside.

Benitez is out of contract in the summer of 2010 and conjecture has implied he could be ready to quit England as it is reported he has turned down four new deals offered by owners George Gillett and Tom Hicks.

But the former Valencia boss insists he is not set to walk away and is preparing for new discussions with the Liverpool hierarchy.

"There is no deadline over my contract talks, certainly not two weeks as has been said. We will have more talks between my lawyer and their advisors in the next days," he added.

"I am looking forward to another conversation, but I am not walking out on anyone."

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