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As featured on NewsNow: Football news

Blame Liverpool owners not Benitez

Liverpool legend Tommy Smith says the club's American owners - not Rafa Benitez - are to blame for their Champions League failure. Smith, who won two European Cups with Liverpool during a 16-year career at Anfield, is pointing the finger not at Benitez but George Gillett and Tom Hicks.

He said: "Europe's upper echelons is where Liverpool Football Club belongs. So being dumped out of a Champions League group which any Liverpool side should ordinarily have been able to conquer, is not good enough.

"Liverpool supporters are magnificent and unique - and the reason why Rafael Benitez and everyone at Anfield knows they deserve far better than they're suddenly getting this season.

"And the question is, will the owners, who hardly ever turn up to watch a game, either sell up or somehow give him the money he needs to ensure this stuttering and deeply frustrating season is not repeated?"

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