Benitez wins battle to spend funds from Babel transfer
Rafael Benitez has won a battle with the Liverpool hierarchy after being told he will be able to spend any money he raises from the sale of Ryan Babel this month.
Senior figures within the Anfield boardroom have performed an about-turn on the issue of funds generated from player sales after initially warning Benitez that money raised would not be reinvested in his playing squad in the transfer window.
Dutch winger Babel, the subject of a £9m bid from Birmingham City earlier this month, is ready to leave Liverpool in an effort to secure his place in Holland's World Cup squad. An £11.5m buy from Ajax in July 2007, the 23-year-old failed to justify his price tag at Anfield, but the club will look to raise in the region of £10m.
Fiorentina are keen to sign the player, with Galatasaray, managed by former Holland and Ajax coach Frank Rijkaard, also interested.
Benitez, whose side take on Reading in an FA Cup replay at Anfield tonight, is expected to soon complete the £1.5m signing of Atletico Madrid winger Maxi Rodriguez.