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Benitez upbeat after draw

22 Nov 2009 - 11:03:30

Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez praised his side's character after a depleted Reds side recovered from early setbacks to draw 2-2 with Manchester City at Anfield.

Both Daniel Agger and Ryan Babel had to be substituted in the opening 18 minutes of the encounter and, despite taking a 50th-minute lead thanks to Martin Skrtel, Liverpool were forced to come from behind to rescue a point through Yossi Benayoun's late strike.

Although the result extended Liverpool's recent run to just one victory - against Manchester United - in their last ten matches, Benitez was unperturbed after the game.

He said: "We're a little bit disappointed, we had chances at the end.

"But with the problems we had, making two substitutions in the first 18 minutes, to still come back we showed very good character. Until the last minute we were still pushing.

"The players worked so hard. You could see that, even with a lot of problems, we were winning and, even after we conceded the first goal and then the second, you could still see the character of the team.

"In the circumstances I thought we were very good.

"Agger has five stitches and Babel has a problem with his ankle, but it's too early to say (if they can play in the Champions League clash with Debrecen) and we have to wait.

"I think it was important for Yossi Benayoun to come through today. On the bench was Albert Riera and hopefully (Glen) Johnson (will return). Maybe we'll have some more coming back."


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