• Premier League

Money key to United success - Benitez

ESPN staff
October 13, 2011
Sir Alex Ferguson and Rafael Benitez had a fierce rivalry © Getty Images

Ahead of this weekend's meeting between Liverpool and Manchester United, former Reds boss Rafael Benitez has suggested United's recent successes are down to money.

Benitez led Liverpool to Champions League and FA Cup glory, but came up short in the Premier League and was so often left looking up at the coattails of United.

Sir Alex Ferguson guided United to three Premier League titles during Benitez's tenure at Anfield - and 12 in all - but the Spaniard feels it was down to money rather than his managerial ability.

"No, I think it's the money they [Man United] were spending," Benitez told Radio Merseyside in response to a question about whether United were dominant on the back of Ferguson's personality. "If you analyse the transfer record and the history...Rooney, or Ferdinand, for example...£30m. £30m for a young player or a centre back. Every year they are very well off.

"It's not just because of the interviews or the press conferences; it's because they had money."

Benitez and Ferguson enjoyed plenty of verbal battles down the years, but the Spaniard claims the mind games did not impact on him.

"If you say something in a press conference I can guarantee you that it has no impact on another manager. It can happen perhaps one in 100 times, but the press likes to talk about mind games, but what they don't realise is that you cannot win mind games if you have a bad team.

"You can be the best in the press conference, but after, if you have a bad team you will lose. It's easy to talk about mind games when he [Ferguson] has a good team and he has won, and that was the case."

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