Liverpool 'reject Babel loan request'

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The Independent Online

Ryan Babel's agent claims the Liverpool winger has failed in a bid to engineer a loan move back to Ajax.

Babel moved from the Amsterdammers to Liverpool in July 2007 but has been unable to hold down a regular starting place at Anfield.

He has made 17 appearances in all competitions this season but the majority of those have come off the bench.

According to his agent Winnie Haatrecht, the 21-year-old would relish a temporary return to Holland in January but Liverpool dismissed the possibility out of hand.

"Ryan finds that he sits on the bench too much at Liverpool, he wants to play more and asked me to see if Ajax were interested in a temporary return," Haatrecht told Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf today.

"After we got an enthusiastic reaction from Ajax, we asked Liverpool for their co-operation but the club don't want to see him go.

"Rafael Benitez finds Ryan too important. Hopefully we will see that in more playing time.

"Let's be clear: Ryan feels great at Liverpool, but for him to develop further he needs to get playing time."

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