Rafa reveals Reds surprise

Former boss thought he deserved chance to replace Dalglish

Rafa Benitez: Surprised he was not in contention to succeed Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool

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Rafa Benitez has revealed he was surprised that he was not approached by Liverpool to replace Kenny Dalglish at Anfield in the summer.

The former Reds boss had expressed an interest in returning to the helm to succeed Dalglish following the Scot's departure in May.

However, Liverpool's American owners overlooked Benitez and plumped for Brendan Rodgers to take charge of the side.

Benitez, who guided Liverpool to Champions League and FA Cup glory during his five seasons on Merseyside, feels his success at the club should have earned him the opportunity to try and succeed Dalglish.

"It was strange not to be approached," Benitez told the Irish Independent. "We know the club, the players, the Academy and we have even more experience now...the fans were positive about the idea."

Benitez, who has been out of work since leaving Inter Milan in 2010, believes despite a disappointing last season at Anfield his record stands up to the test.

"We used to play so many important games that it seemed it was normal and it wasn't," added Benitez. "People were talking about 'the past', but just a few years ago Liverpool FC was No.1 in Europe."