Benitez denies deal row

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Rafael Benitez, the Liverpool manager, has confirmed he has agreed the length of a potential new contract at Anfield as well as the salary on offer. However, he is baffled by reports that he is at odds with the club's American co-owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett over the remaining terms of the deal. Benitez insisted he had not had time to fully digest the contract details as they only arrived on Monday.

It was reported that Benitez had demanded complete control over transfers and more say in the running of the club's academy. However, he said: "I don't have any problems at all with the American owners. My agent only received the draft document yesterday evening. So my surprise is that some journalists can talk about there being problems before I have even read it properly and discussed it.

"We have agreed the length of contract and we have agreed the salary. Now we have to discuss my role and my responsibilities. But we haven't had the opportunity to do that. Someone clearly wants to create a mess, but I haven't discussed anything yet."