Brendan Rodgers has dismissed claims Jurgen Klopp plans to offload Christian Benteke and confirmed the German tried to sign the Belgian striker for Borussia Dortmund.
Liverpool paid Aston Villa £32.5million for Benteke last summer, but has only started six times under Klopp since the German replaced Rodgers at Anfield in October.
There’s been several suggestions that Benteke does not fit into Klopp’s preferred style of play at Anfield, with our weekly Red Letter column suggesting the Reds would be best to cut their losses on the striker.
Transfer speculation this week even claimed the striker could leave Anfield during this transfer window, but speaking on talkSPORT’s Sports Breakfast show, Rodgers said that definitive judgements on the frontman’s Anfield career are premature.
Asked if he believes Benteke has a future at Liverpool under Klopp, Rodgers was clear. “Yes, I think he will. With Christian, I think Jurgen will take his time with him.
“In this country, now, everything is very ‘short-termism’, isn’t it? People look at it like, you’ve got to come in, get 20 goals in your first season or you might be deemed a failure.
“I don’t think Jurgen’s looking at it as that. He tried to sign him for Dortmund. He knows he’s a good player. He met the boy, he met the agent, he met them in Germany, so he knows he’s a good player.
“[Klopp] Coming in to Liverpool, he’ll know that he wants to use him. It’s going to take Christian a bit of time.”
Rodgers also revealed the thinking behind bringing Benteke to the club, despite some people within the game being uncertain about how the striker’s style of play would fit in with Liverpool’s tactics.
“I took him to Liverpool in the summer because we were really short on goals and the one thing he does give you is goals, but obviously it’s going to take him time to get up to the way the team wants to play and Jurgen wants to press.”