• Premier League

Riera move to Spartak stalls

Soccernet staff
April 1, 2010

Liverpool winger Albert Riera has backtracked on his "sinking ship'' comments about the club after admitting his plans for a move to Spartak Moscow have ground to a halt.

The Spain international was briefly suspended last month for his outburst, in which he also criticised manager Rafael Benitez for failing to communicate with his players.

An angry Benitez immediately sanctioned a loan move to Russia - whose transfer window is currently open until next week - and froze Riera out of his first-team plans.

However, now the escape route to Moscow appears to have been closed off after the two parties failed to agree personal terms, Riera has tried to repair the damage done by his comments on the eve of the important Europa League last-16 second leg against Lille last month.

"Negotiations with Spartak Moscow are stalled...my intention is to decide my future in the summer,'' Riera told Marca. "I want to continue my career at Liverpool because it is one of the best clubs in the world.

"The feeling is spectacular, we have a great stadium and I feel very good at Liverpool. I speak with Fernando Torres and (Jose) Reina and agree on the greatness of Liverpool.''

Such apparent contrition is unlikely to convince Benitez to welcome him back into the fold. The Reds boss has not forgiven Riera, worried about his World Cup chances, for so publicly trying to manufacture a move at a crucial time of the season by misrepresenting his relationship with him.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.