£5m pot leaves Rafa with a transfer dilemma

‘A substantial transfer budget’ – These are the words of Liverpool’s co-owner Tom Hicks’ to Rafa Benitez regarding the transfer budget this summer the Spaniard has to spend. Unfortunately it’s not as bulky as Benitez would have hoped for, in fact, Liverpool will reportedly go into the summer window with only a measly £5 million to utilise.

Which Begs the question, will Rafa Benitez have to sacrifice his stars this summer in order to acquire top talent?

The Liverpool boss is still uncertain as to whether (if he does decide to sell players) that the money generated from their sales will be added to his transfer budget or not. As a result of this, Benitez remains wary on giving the go-ahead to deals that would see Yossi Benayoun, Philip Degen, Ryan Babel and Albert Riera depart from Merseyside. With this being said, should the Spaniard let go of his ‘fringe’ players even though he may not see the recouped cash?

Concerns continue to grow backstage as Liverpool owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett appear to be holding out for a massive £800 million to sell the club. Benitez’s future still remains unclear, and problems within the club have also led to the unsettlement of their biggest stars, Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres.

Both have indicated that they will make a decision on their future after the completion of this summer’s world cup (leaving fans of the club sweating no doubt).

Newly appointed Real Madrid boss, Jose Mourinho, has already expressed his interest in the Liverpool skipper and Torres is a major target for Manchester City, Chelsea and Barcelona. To sacrifice the captain and there most lethal striker sounds absolutely ludicrous, but will Rafa need to sacrifice one in order to strengthen in two or three areas?

Javier Mascherano has already stalled on signing a new deal at the club, therefore will he be only big name to be sacrificed this summer or are there others in line to follow?

Despite their poor season, Rafa Benitez will want to keep his top players at Anfield next season (a feeling shared by many at the club). However, Liverpool have descended deeper and deeper into debt and domestic chaos certainly isn’t helping the cause.

A £5 million kitty is hardly anything in the transfer window these days. The fact is Liverpool will have to sell players and hope that the money recouped from the sales will be added to the budget in whole. It’s a huge risk for the club to take, but is it an inevitable one? Liverpool will need to sell in order to strengthen their squad this summer, yet many fans out there will feel that the sales of their biggest stars is not the right way to go about it.

If the worst occurs and Gerrard, Torres and Mascherano were to depart from Anfield this summer, then many fans (Liverpool and neutrals) will feel that the club are set to follow in Leeds United’s footsteps in the future.

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