Benitez praises Garcia
By Peter Fraser
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez wishes Luis Garcia 'all the best' in Spain.
Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez wishes Luis Garcia 'all the best' on his return to Atletico Madrid.
The Liverpool boss has revealed he let the Spanish international, who has previously had spells at Atletico and Barcelona, return home because he could not promise him regular first-team football.
Garcia made the Spanish switch on Tuesday, allowing Fernando Torres to complete his £20million move in the other direction, but Benitez has nothing but praise for the outgoing attacker.
"Luis was happy here, but Atletico is a good club for him," Benitez told Liverpool's official website.
"It was the right time, because after three years maybe the situation was different.
"He wanted to play every game and that's not easy when we have other players coming here.
"This was a very good solution for him and also for us."
Garcia missed the second half of last season through injury but Benitez is keen for the 29-year-old to succeed on his return to Spain.
"I want to say 'all the best' because he was a fantastic player, a fantastic person and a fantastic professional," added Benitez.
"He has been a very good player for us. He has talent and the skills to change a game.
"When you are at home, the opponents play deep and there is not much space, but he can change this.
"In some games, I thought maybe if we had Luis today it would be different."
Garcia is perhaps best remembered on Merseyside for his goal which knocked Chelsea out of the 2005 Champions League semi-finals as Liverpool went on to lift the trophy.