3 Mar 2009

Benitez discusses title fade with his squad

10:27 am on 3 March 2009

Liverpool's manager Rafael Benitez admits he held a meeting with his players in the aftermath of their defeat at Middlesbrough to discuss the team's title meltdown.

Benitez's side wasted a chance to close the gap on leaders Manchester United as they crashed to a 2-0 loss and are now seven points behind United, having played a game more.

They host Sunderland tomorrrow and the Spanish coach believes injuries to stars like Fernando Torres have played a key role in their failure to keep pace with United by placing too much pressure on the squad's youngsters.

But he's refused to be drawn on whether he will sign a new contract soon and also side-stepped questions over whether he had discussed the squad's lack of depth with the club's American owners as well as his players.