Liverpool boss defends Gerrard over 'V-sign' claims

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Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has defended Steven Gerrard following allegations the midfielder made a V sign towards referee Andre Marriner during the defeat by Wigan.

Benitez said after the game he had not seen the incident and after reviewing it on video believes there is no case to answer.

"Sometimes you move your fingers," He said. "It was nothing. We are not considering it, it was nothing.

Benitez added: "All the players know they have to behave on the pitch. I was more worried about the silly fouls we were giving to Wigan."

Liverpool are struggling to claim fourth spot after losing a game many expected them to win. And Wigan chairman Dave Whelan was critical of the club following their surprise victory.

That drew an angry response from Benitez, who said: "I do not know what is going on. I do not talk about Wigan. I prefer to concentrate on my team. He (Whelan) should talk about his own club."

Benitez is glad to they have an opportunity to get back to winning ways quickly as they face Lille in the Europa League on Thursday.

The squad are leaving for France this on Wednesday evening and the Spanish boss is hoping the Wigan result is just a blip.

He said: "We had been working well in the last 10 games, more or less. Sometimes these things happen. Now we have to move forward.

"Hopefully there will be a reaction in Lille. This is an opportunity to put things right and try to get a good result. In football you sometimes prefer to rest but at this time it is good to have a match quickly after what happened at Wigan."

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