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Rafa ready to offload Babel

Dutch international Ryan Babel looks all set to leave Liverpool in the summer as Rafa Benitez bids to bolster his summer war-chest.

It's understood Benitez has decided to cash in on the 22-year-old after just two years at the club.

Babel was looking to gain assurances about his first-team future after starting just six games in the league this season, but Benitez has been unable to offer the winger the guarantees he was looking for and Benitez is now looking to recoup the £11.5million he paid Ajax for the player.

Babel has scored 14 goals in 91 matches for the club - although only 42 of those have been as a starter and Benitez has decided the Amsterdam-born forward has not made enough progress since his arrival in 2007.

Liverpool are looking to add two or else three quality players to their squad and the sale of Babel might allow Benitez to close a deal for Valencia's Spanish international David Silva and the long-admired Gareth Barry.

Aston Villa midfielder Barry is still wanted at Anfield and Babel could be used as bait to seal the deal for the England man.

Tottenham are also rumoured to be interested in the pacy Babel, while his former club Ajax, under the new leadership of Martin Jol, could also launch an audacious bid to try and upset the odds.