Football

Benitez happy with reds position

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Rafael Benitez believes both Liverpool and Atletico Madrid are now in a "fantastic position" to clinch qualification for the Champions League last 16.

The sides drew 1-1 in group D at Anfield on Tuesday night, with a controversial Steven Gerrard penalty in the fourth minute of injury time to cancelling out a first-half goal from Maxi Rodriguez.

"Madrid and us are in a fantastic position now to both qualify, we both need one more win," said Benitez

"We are disappointed we did not win. But we have one more point and that is positive.

"Madrid had one chance and scored, and in the second half they were dangerous on the counter-attack and at times they could have grabbed another goal.

"But we had so many chances, we should have won the match. Madrid were organised, but only had that one chance."

Atletico were furious with Swedish referee Martin Hansson for his spot-kick decision, but the Anfield boss insisted that he was right to award an injury-time penalty after Gerrard was felled in an aerial collision with Mariano Pernia, before rapping home the spot-kick himself.

Gerrard conceded: "I was not sure it was a penalty, I got to the ball first, and I suppose if that was outside the area it would be a free-kick."

Benitez agreed, saying: "It was disappointing that it all came down to having to score from a penalty. There was a clear handball in the second-half that was not given, and had that offence against Steven taken place in the middle of the pitch it would have been a free-kick, so it was a penalty."

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Topics:
European News
Football
Steven Gerrard
Liverpool

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