Liverpool on fire ahead of United clash

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Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez believes his side will march into Old Trafford on Saturday brimming with confidence after their 4-0 Champions League demolition of Real Madrid.

Benitez began the day desperate for two wins in five days to maintain the club's interest in Europe and the Barclays Premier League. Now after humiliating the nine-times European champions in a 5-0 aggregate win to reach the quarter-finals, Benitez is half way to his dream.

Liverpool face Manchester United, needing to cut the champion's seven-point lead at the top of the Premier League. And Benitez said: "We have an important game next, but we have played well here, scored four goals and are very confident."

He added: "That is the best way to prepare for such a game.

"It was important for us to play that well, but we are now facing a very good team and we must win to close the gap at the top. We have a few days to enjoy this result and make sure we are positive and prepared properly for the game at Old Trafford."

Steven Gerrard scored twice in his 100th European game for the club with Fernando Torres and Andrea Dossena completing the crushing victory.

And Benitez was able to hit back at the critics who have branded him a defensive coach, particularly in his Spanish homeland.

He said: "Yes, I know people in Spain think that my teams do not attack, but look at this result and look at the 119 goals we scored last season. That says something different.

"We are ranked the number one club in Europe by UEFA over the last five years and a result like this against a great club like Real Madrid is very pleasing."

He added: "We played really well from beginning to the end, and I am really pleased for the fans."

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European News
Premier League
Fernando Torres
UEFA Champions League
Manchester United
Steven Gerrard

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