Benitez has faith in current Liverpool squad

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez is hopeful of being able to strengthen his side before the end of the transfer window but is prepared to keep faith with the players who have underachieved this season.

The club were today again linked with a loan deal for Sunderland striker Kenwyne Jones, although the Black Cats were quick to dismiss the suggestion.

Benitez needs to bring in a striker with Fernando Torres sidelined for six weeks after a knee operation at the weekend and believes the Trinidadian's physical presence is what is required.

With captain Steven Gerrard (hamstring) and Yossi Benayoun (rib) sidelined for a few weeks Liverpool are without their three leading scorers, compounding their problems.

Having brought in Atletico Madrid midfielder Maxi Rodriguez last week Benitez is still looking for one more arrival.

"We will see if we can do something more in this transfer window," said the Spaniard, who is hampered by the club's financial restrictions which mean he does not have a great deal of money to spend.

"If we cannot we will stick together for the next challenge. We have a good team, a good squad and not as bad as people think.

"It is important to have confidence. When people say we need two strikers like Torres you say 'Okay. Where are these strikers and how much can you pay for them?"'

Benitez has been told he can use proceeds from any sales to finance new signings but the only likely departure is that of Ryan Babel, who angered his manager by revealing his omission from Saturday's squad on Twitter 24 hours before the game.

The Holland international has been fined by the club and despite previous assertions by Benitez he wanted to keep the forward his future is destined to be away from Anfield.

However, the stumbling block may come over Liverpool's valuation of the 23-year-old, signed from Ajax for £11.5million in July 2007.

Of more concern to the manager is the team's problem of conceding late goals, which cost them a vital victory at Stoke on Saturday.

Goals in the 90th minute have already cost Benitez's team a place in the Champions League knock-out stage as Lyon snatched four points with strikes in added time in their two group encounters.

Reading's 92nd-minute penalty at Anfield last week allowed them to level up their FA Cup third-round replay and then go on to win it in extra time.

But the Reds' defence had still not learned their lesson - as demonstrated by Robert Huth's strike at the Britannia Stadium at the weekend.

"We have to be better, we have to be more 'savvy' and control these games," said Benitez.

"If we cannot score the second goal at least we have to manage and win these games without playing well.

"The main thing this year is we are conceding goals so we have to be stronger in defence."

It is difficult to pin Liverpool's woes on one incident but had they held on against the Potters they would have been faced with the prospect of beating Tottenham at Anfield on Wednesday to go fourth in the Barclays Premier League.

And although that would have barely papered over the cracks it would have given Benitez some breathing space as he works out how to salvage the season without the services of injured trio Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard and Yossi Benayoun for the next few weeks.

"In football every week things can change and with one or two results things can be different," said the Liverpool manager.

"When Arsenal came here (on December 13) people were talking about them being under pressure but they won and two weeks later they are contenders and can win the title."

Sport
Brazilian fans watch the match for third place between Brazil and Netherlands
world cup 2014Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: Dutch pile on the misery in third place playoff
Sport
Robin van Persie hands his third-place medal to a supporter
Van Persie gives bronze medal to eccentric fan moments after being handed it by Blatter
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
scienceScientists have developed a material so dark you can't see it...
News
Monkey business: Serkis is the king of the non-human character performance
peopleFirst Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Arts and Entertainment
Blackman: Landscape of children’s literature does not reflect the cultural diversity of young people
booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
News
Soft power: Matthew Barzun
peopleThe US Ambassador to London, Matthew Barzun, holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence. He says it's all part of the job
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
News
Gavin Maxwell in Sandaig with one of his pet otters
peopleWas the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?
News
Rowsell says: 'Wearing wigs is a way of looking normal. I pick a style and colour and stick to it because I don't want to keep wearing different styles'
peopleThe World Champion cyclist Joanna Rowsell on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?