BENITEZ EXCITED BY SPENDING POWER
By Paul Walker, PA Sport
Rafael Benitez admits he is relishing the prospect of being able to spend big in the transfer market if the proposed Liverpool takeover is completed.
The Anfield boss was anticipating the new "big picture" and an exciting future as he brought his squad back from Turkey following the disappointing - but largely unimportant - Champions League Group C defeat by Galatasaray in Istanbul.
Liverpool were already confirmed as group winners, and can now contemplate the knockout stage draw later this month which could see them paired with second-placed finishers Real Madrid, Inter Milan, Roma or Barcelona.
That is an exciting prospect for Benitez, as is the potential takeover of the club by Dubai International Capital - news of which has dominated Liverpool's passage this week into the next stage of this season's tournament.
Due diligence will now have to be completed before the £450million deal can go ahead, with the prospect of major transfer funds being released by the Maktoum family, the backers of the proposed buy-out.
And Benitez clearly believes he will soon be able to compete in the transfer market with Europe's big guns, including Chelsea.
Benitez said: "The big picture now is clear. This investment can help us for the future.
"We can have a big stadium, more fans seeing us and also a lot of money.
"That will help us for sure. We will be able to compete at the top end of the transfer market and that is a good prospect for me.
"It is important for a club like ours to have this level of investment, and it is important for the manager, too.
"You can consider buying certain players and you will know that the club is behind you. If they have enough money it will certainly help us for the future.
"Maybe in the future we will have more money. It is a great possibility."
He added: "It is important for the club to have the prospect of such new investment, we are pleased and so I believe are our supporters.
"If this turns out to be the right thing for this club it will be fantastic. We do have to be careful, we cannot just change all the team straight away, and we would not want to because we have some fine players already.
"It would be wrong to change everything. This team has won trophies while the chairman has spent three years trying to find investment."
The prospect of greater buying power for the future also inspired midfielder Xabi Alonso.
He said: "If the takeover is good for the club then obviously I am happy. It's not done yet, but really close.
"They will bring new ideas, and money. The new stadium is a priority and that will help the level that the team can reach as well as bringing in new players."http://www.sportinglife.com/football/news/story_get.cgi?STORY_NAME=soccer/06/12/06/SOCCER_Liverpool_Nightlead.html&TEAMHD=soccer