Arbeloa admits 'inhumane' start
Alvaro Arbeloa has described his first weeks under Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez as 'inhumane'.
By Peter Fraser
Last Updated: 28/03/08 10:21am
Liverpool defender Alvaro Arbeloa has described his first few weeks under manager Rafa Benitez as 'inhumane'.
Arbeloa joined the Reds for £2.5million from Deportivo La Coruna in January 2007 and the Spanish international admits he was shocked by his first few weeks.
But the right-back - who made his debut for Spain in Wednesday's 1-0 victory over Italy - insists he is now settled on Merseyside ahead of Sunday's crucial derby with Everton at Anfield, which can be seen live on Sky Sports 1.
Arbeloa has made 35 appearances for Liverpool this season after taking advantage of the injury and inconsistent form of Steve Finnan, but he admits he struggled to settle in his early days in England.
"I didn't know where I was in my first week with Liverpool," Arbeloa told the Daily Mail.
"It went badly, and the image I remember from those early days is of the manager (Benitez) criticising everything I did, from the way I did some basketball practice to how I played my football.
"My first fortnight at the club was inhumane, but I am grateful to him now for filling me in on how the team works. It is a well-run club and I found it easy to adapt to their way of working.
"People say the manager is grumpy but I have only seen that once. He is serious-minded, though, and I can assure you nobody enjoys themselves during the training sessions."
Arbeloa has also described Jamie Carragher as Liverpool's 'boss' in the dressing room, but insists Steven Gerrard is the team's on-field leader.
"Jamie is the true boss in the changing room," Arbeloa added. "He orders everyone around and yells a lot but, to be fair, he has a CV equal to Fernando Hierro's for Real Madrid and the Spain national team. He sees and hears everything and keeps us informed about what is happening.
"Gerrard is also important. He is like Zinedine Zidane - a genius who doesn't like to be the centre of attention. He is the first to make runs, to lend a hand or to get stuck in when necessary."