Benitez remembers Hillsborough
© AFP

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez has stressed the importance of the annual Hillsborough Memorial Service for everyone at the club and wider community.

The Spaniard will attend his sixth service this afternoon on the 21st anniversary of the tragedy when 96 fans lost their lives at the FA Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday's ground.

"Since I've been here it's always been very, very emotional," said Benitez. "All the players and all the staff are always there trying to support the families because it is a very important day for the club.

"The first time I went to the memorial service I was so impressed by what happens at this club. You can see the people and all the feelings. It's a poignant occasion to keep everyone remembering."

The Bishop of Liverpool the Right Reverend James Jones is chairman of the Hillsborough Independent Panel which will oversee the release of documents not previously made public.

He said he hoped the victims' families would finally be given closure on the event. "What has struck me already in listening to the families and survivors is their need to simply have the story told fully," he said. "What prevents anybody from being able to move on is when you feel the whole story has not been told.

"What I hope, through the maximum disclosure of these documents, is that the fullest story will be told and that will help everybody who grieves and who survived.

"When you know what has happened is in the public domain, and everybody knows what happened, that helps you to come to terms with such a terrible tragedy."