Rafa Benitez has expressed his surprise at the fact he was not approached by Liverpool to replace Kenny Dalglish at Anfield this summer.

The former Reds boss, who guided the club to Champions League and FA Cup glory during five successful seasons on Merseyside, feels his achievements should have at least earned him the opportunity of an interview, after declaring his interest in the job.

However, Liverpool's American owners Fenway Sports Group, led by principal owner John W Henry, overlooked Benitez instead plumping for former Swansea manager Brendan Rodgers to take charge of the side.

"It was strange not to be approached," the Spaniard told the Irish Independent. "We know the club, the players, the Academy and we have even more experience now. The fans were positive about the idea."

Benitez has been out of work since leaving Inter Milan in 2010, but believes despite a disappointing last season at Anfield his overall record stands up to the test.

"We used to play so many important games that it seemed it was normal and it wasn't," he explained. "People were talking about 'the past', but just a few years ago Liverpool FC was No.1 in Europe."

Under Rodgers, Liverpool have made a disappointing start to the 2012/13 campaign, losing two and drawing one of their opening three games, and currently lie 18th in the Premier League table with a solitary point.

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