Monday, 18th January 2010

Ryan Babel’s future looks ever more likely to be away from Liverpool as The Guardian reports that the relationship between player and manager Rafael Benitez are currently strained. The Dutchman has been used sparingly this season, and yesterday, was offered to Sunderland for Kenwyne Jones – a deal that was flatly rejected by Black Cats boss Steve Bruce.

Benitez also publicly challenged Babel to prove he deserved to be on the team, saying, "I was talking with Ryan one week ago and I explained the situation very clearly to him. After the meeting everything was fine. He was working and he was on the bench and he played against Reading. After this game I decided he would not be on the bench and that is it. If Ryan trains hard and is ready to play he will be available. If not, he won’t be available.”

Babel has featured in only 13 matches so far this campaign after two seasons with the Reds, and is likely to be playing elsewhere should he continue to fail to meet the manager’s expectations.


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