Benitez admits he must sell before buying this summer

Rafael Benitez has admitted that he must again sell before he can buy this summer but he has already identified his targets, with Valencia's David Silva, Raul Albiol and a return for Aston Villa's Gareth Barry seemingly in his sights.

Benitez's declaration that "maybe we have to sell someone" gives the lie to Sir Alex Ferguson's recent claim that "you will see Rafa produce an incredible spending spree" now he has his new contract. Ryan Babel would seem to be among those who Benitez might be prepared to sell, as well as Andrei Voronin – a major success on loan at Hertha Berlin, who cannot afford to buy him – and Andrea Dossena. Xabi Alonso, the subject of interest from Arsenal and Internazionale last summer, might also leave if Barry is to arrive, though Benitez seems prepared to fight to keep him after his successful season.

If last summer's drawn-out Barry affair is anything to go by, it could be a difficult summer with Liverpool possibly without a chief executive, if Tom Hicks and George Gillett have not found their man by then.

But Benitez's dependence on Fernando Torres makes the pursuit of another striker crucial. Much depends on whether an impoverished Valencia are willing to rein in their demands for Silva, which proved prohibitive when Benitez made initial inquiries. The same applies to Albiol.

Yossi Benayoun's major contribution in Steven Gerrard's absence has strengthened the future Anfield prospects of an individual who had made no secret of his dissatisfaction on the sidelines. "I think if he is happy, then he will be okay here. Yossi now is playing, so I'm sure he is happy. We've had no real approaches for him," Benitez said. "Now he is playing more games, has more confidence and you can see the quality that he has. I have to talk to him [about a new contract] but he is contracted for another two years."

The Liverpool manager also said he was confident of resolving the protracted contract talks with Daniel Agger. "I think that we are closer," Benitez said. "We know we have better players and it will be more difficult to find better players than we have now."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border