Worrying quotes from Anfield boss.
Rafa Benitez has conceded for the first time Liverpool will consider bids for star duo Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres.
Since the Reds accepted a £30million bid from Chelsea for skipper Gerrard back in 2005, Benitez has always insisted he would never entertain offers for his prized assets.
Joining Gerrard in that category is goal-machine Torres, who has become one of the top forwards in world football since arriving on Merseyside in 2007.
Manchester City’s reported interest in the Spanish international last season was met by a definitive rebuff from Benitez, who has previously claimed he would quit the Reds if the striker was allowed to leave.
Benitez’s guarantee of UEFA Champions League football next season is by no means a certainty as Liverpool trail Tottenham, Aston Villa and City this term and the ramifications of missing out on the financial windfall of a top-four finish could be crippling for the Reds.
And Benitez has given the first indication that the five-time European champions would be forced to consider offers due to their lack of funds, although the Spanish tactician does not expect the scenario to materialise.
“We would have a conversation and decide what’s the best for the club,” said Benitez.
“I’ve said before I want to keep the best players here because that means we can be closer to the top four. They are the most important.
“We gave extensions to players because we want to keep the squad together.
“If you ask any manager in the world they will tell you they want more money and want to spend but at this moment we have to do what’s best for the club.
“That means managing the situation for each player and see what happens.” (Sky Sports)
I really don’t get this one bit. Rather than trying to deflect the incessant transfer speculation linking the likes of Real Madrid, Chelsea and Manchester City with El Nino and Stevie G, in much the same way Arsene Wenger regularly does with Cesc Fabregas, Rafa appears to be persuading potential bids for two of our prized possessions, but why?
Anfield can not do without either Fernando Torres or Steven Gerrard and for Benitez to not come out and simply say that they are not for sale at any price is frankly baffling. Liverpool may be in financial dire straits but the idea that they would even consider offers for either player is incredible.
All these latest quotes from our gaffer will do is give renewed hope to sides with seemingly endless supplies of cash that they could actually purchase either Liverpool star and one can only imagine what the players make of such a statement. It also calls into question our well publicized money problems. Have things got so bad that we may HAVE to sell one of our stars? I sincerely hope not!