As is often the case in the build up to Liverpool games against Manchester United, plenty of outlets have been looking at previous encounters and incidents that took place regarding the two teams in the past.
One moment that is often brought up is Rafa Benitez’s ‘facts’ rant about Sir Alex Ferguson during the run in to the 2008/09 Premier League season.
Jamie Carragher, who was part of Benitez’s squad at that time, has told his new employers Sky Sports, that he never really understood the reasoning behind Benitez choosing to go after Ferguson.
Rafa, on the Friday, mentioned to me he was going to say something in his press conference before it happened so it was premeditated. It wasn’t a reaction to something. I didn’t know what he was going to say. Still to this day people always say it affected us but I don’t think it did because we only lost two games in the whole season. It wasn’t like we completely went off the rails. I just don’t know why he did it. The only thing I’m thinking of, if I’m being totally honest, is we were going for the league and it was Rafa sort of calling it on with [Man United].
However, Gary Neville who was part of the United squad at that time said the ‘rant’ did make it feel like Benitez was cracking under the pressure of a title run in and that gave United a psychological edge
I remember being at home that day, watching Sky Sports News and thinking ‘What’s he done?’ It was reported that ‘he’s cracking up,’ and then the fans start singing ‘Rafa’s cracking up,’ and it did feel like the pressure was getting to him. You can imagine Sir Alex being at home being like, ‘I’ve got him.’