Benitez ignores Ferguson barb

The former Manchester United boss was critical of the Spaniard in his book but the 53-year-old will not be drawn into a war of words
Napoli coach Rafa Benitez has refused to fire back at Sir Alex Ferguson after coming in for stinging criticism from the former Manchester United boss in his recently released autobiography.

Benitez and Ferguson were fierce rivals while the pair were in charge of Liverpool and Manchester United respectively, with one particular spat resulting in the now famous 'facts'-related rant from the Partenopei boss.

But despite seeing both his personality and tactical style heavily-slated in the book, the Spaniard insists he remains comfortable with his footballing outlook.

He told reporters: "I will not respond. Everyone knows what I have done.”

Since leaving Liverpool, Benitez has had differing spells with Inter and Chelsea before talking over from Walter Mazzarri in Naples over the summer.

The 53-year-old oversaw an overhaul of the squad, partly thanks to the proceeds of Edinson Cavani's €64 million move to Paris Saint-Germain, and those moves in the transfer market have already begun to pay off.

Napoli sit second in Serie A with 19 points from their first eight games, while taking six points from their opening three Champions League matches, but Benitez says he remains open to further signings in January.

He continued: “I spoke to the president and he told me he’s satisfied with the squad. We agree Napoli are open to buying top level players.

“I won’t name names, but I always tell the club we are on the look-out for players all year round. I’ve often heard people say we are missing this or that player, but we are just looking for players to improve a squad we are already very happy with.”

The San Paolo club host Torino on Sunday and Benitez was bullish in his assessment of the club's prospects in Serie A this term.

"We know every game is worth three points and we are two games away from first place.

“We cannot look at the table with concern, but just keep an eye on what we do week by week. At the end of the day we will be up there competing for the top places.

“Juventus are strong, but we’ll see in February what position they are in. Roma, just like Inter, are strong and have the advantage of not playing in Europe, but there’s a long way to go and we cannot predict what will happen.