Benitez challenges Babel

11 June 2009 04:48
Rafa Benitez has challenged Ryan Babel to improve tactically and earn a regular Liverpool starting berth. The Dutch youngster has established a reputation as a super-sub at Anfield after moving from Ajax in an £11million switch two years ago. The 22-year-old has scored nine times after climbing off the bench but now Benitez wants the player - who only started 13 times last season - to take the next step. The Reds boss told the Liverpool Echo: "Ryan has done well as an impact player, which is not easy when you are young, but we think he can do more than that. "Our view of Ryan is a player who starts games and has an impact from the beginning. "But first of all he has to improve tactically." The 22-year-old Dutch flyer is rated at around £10million in the transfer market and has previously been linked with moves to Aston Villa, Spurs and Arsenal. But his agent Winnie Haatrecht insists the player wants to stay and prove himself at Anfield. "Ryan is very happy at Liverpool and clearly doesn't want to leave," said Haatrecht. "He still has a three-year contract."

Source: SKY_Sports