Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez has ducked questions over the Gareth Barry saga after last night's 0-0 draw at Villarreal.

Earlier in the day, Aston Villa declared negotiations over because Liverpool had failed to meet a deadline set for them to come up with the £18million asking price.

Benitez, though, insisted on his 'party line' response to questions about Barry, saying, "I would prefer to concentrate on the game and my squad".

He added: "I was really pleased with the situation on the pitch tonight.

"Robbie Keane did well, he had every chance to score but could not manage a goal."

And when questioned again on the Barry subject, he said: "I think we have quality in the squad and I would prefer to concentrate on the game."

Benitez added: "I feel the quality is improving, it is better than last season, and this match has been of benefit to the squad and for me to see several young players in action."