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Liverpool's revolution under Rafael Benitez

Benitez, who has just signed up until 2014, has transformed Liverpool into one of Europe's most threatening teams. In the last fortnight alone they have closed Manchester United's seven-point lead to one, knocked Real Madrid out of the Champions league and put five goals past Aston Villa.

Hererra, who left Anfield to take over at Castellon, describes his former boss as a man who "lives football 24 hours a day".

"Benitez does not leave any room for improvisation and he himself supervises everything. It's true he has a database with information on more than 10,000 players. It was when we started to sign up all the scouts. We started incorporating people from one country or another [and] as time went on Rafa proposed to create a personal database. That's where every day all the scouts are putting information on all the players they are watching - I would say it would be closer to 14,000 players."

Building a video room and ensuring access to footage from 12 top leagues around the world:
"There are big satellite dishes and contracts with two or three companies that make sure every month the club get all the videos from every country."

Transforming the Melwood training ground:

"Everything was created little by little - most of the things were done in the first two years. In the second year we started building a hotel of about 20 rooms. It was completed before I left so the players could concentrate there - above all before Champions League games. The players rest there in the training centre and they don't go to any other hotel. Benitez also created small hills in the training ground for the players to do resistance running."

Revolutionising the player's lifestyles:
"Dietary habits were changed from the outset. In general terms in the teams where the management staff were English the diet was not very careful. St the start the entire training ground - restaurant areas, areas with refrigerators where you can get energy drinks - as soon as Rafa arrived he banned everything he thought might be bad for the players. From that day food was meticulously studied. Now breakfast and lunch is made with commonsense for the good of an athlete."

Paco Herrera on Rafael Benitez and Liverpool:
"Everything is very detailed and thought through. Rafa lives football 24 hours a day. He has faith in his coaching staff and we had a great team. What they [Liverpool] value is the personality of Rafa. Professionals are respected there and Rafa is hugely respected. Bill Shankly is a myth for them - he is everything. but I think Rafa, in those five years at least, will match what they consider Shankly to be."

Copyright - Daily Telegraph

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