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'Champions League easier than EPL'
March 12, 2008 10:25 IST
Liverpool coach Rafael Benitez said the Champions League was easier than the Premier League after his side won 1-0 at Inter Milan on Tuesday to reach the quarter-finals 3-0 on aggregate.
Liverpool won the Champions League under Benitez in 2005 and were runners-up last year, but they have struggled to overcome Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea domestically. Those three teams are also in the last eight of the European Cup.
"For us the Champions League is a bit easier because we can be concentrated in two games. In the Premier League the top three English clubs are tough and it is hard every game," he told a news conference.
"The difference is the Premier League is for nine months."
Inter coach Roberto Mancini announced after the game that he would be leaving at the end of the season.
Benitez laughed off suggestions Inter may try to recruit him and said he was happy with his Liverpool team, who are fourth in the Premier League.
"We have a better squad than before. For me the most important thing is that the team is winning in the Champions League every year," he said, adding he would wait for Friday's draw before thinking about the quarter-finals.
"I don't have a preference, I would be really pleased to play the final, if it is against an English (team) then better."
Jamie Carragher, filling in at right back for the injured Steve Finnan, was a rock as he became the first Liverpool player to make 100 European appearances. Striker Fernando Torres grabbed the goal with a great shot.
"Torres is a threat to defenders, this is clear. We have very good players. It is the power of the Premier League," Benitez said.
UEFA Champions League 2007-08: The Complete Coverage