Riera remarks reek of self-pitty

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Liverpool midfielder Albert Riera has hit out at Rafa Benitez, claiming the Reds boss has little personal skills with the players and has lost the plot at Anfield, describing the club as a “sinking ship”.

Riera is frustrated by lack of first team opportunities this season, in the build up to the World Cup in which he hopes to play for Spain.

He told Spanish radio, “When the coach says nothing to you and you are well, with no physical problems and training well, you cannot help but think it must be something personal.

“If I’m doing something badly and you are my boss, and you value me, then you are going to come and tell me what I have to do to play again. This is what hurts me. When you see a ship is sinking and don’t do anything.

“It’s a little frustrating because you see that you can help. I’ve been here two years and I know how he (Benitez) is. He’s never sorted out a situation with a player by talking with him. He thinks he’s in charge and everything else falls on deaf ears. His dialogue with the players is practically nil.”

Riera has been dropped for this evening’s Europa League second leg against Lille at Anfield and will not train with the squad ahead of Sunday’s match at Man United.

Riera, who arrived from Espanyol for £8m in 2008, added “I would like to be here for the rest of my career, but players live to play. My objective is to go to the World Cup and for this I have to play.

“Right now the only market open is the Russian one, I have offers from two teams and, looking at my situation, that has made me reflect a lot.”

Former Liverpool midfielder Didi Hamann said of Riera’s comments “I didn’t read too much into the comments because he’s a player who has not played too much football over the last six to eight months.”

“He is clearly frustrated but you have to say since he signed for Liverpool he has not done enough to really have an opinion on the manager.”

“If Riera is not in the team it is probably because he is not doing enough in training or in games. You have players these days who complain about managers and I think these players should look at themselves.”

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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