Aldridge: Ayesteran exit hurt Liverpool

Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge believes the loss of Rafael Benitez's assistant Paco Ayesteran is a major factor in the team's plight.

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Benitez's side crashed out of the FA Cup courtesy of Barnsley's injury-time winner at Anfield on Saturday.

And highly-decorated former striker Aldridge admits ongoing confusion off the field is adding to problems on the pitch.

"It's not going too well on and off the field at the moment," he told Setanta Sports News. "The club's imploded over the past couple of months and it can only get better.

"A lot of people are getting the wrong idea of what's happening. You can look back to when Paco went a couple of months ago, Rafa's right-hand man, I think that's got a massive bearing on it.

"He's holding the fort on his own without a right-hand man. He's working very hard on his own and under very difficult circumstances and I think he needs a bit of help right now."

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