John Barnes says 25-year-old striker is unlikely to leave Liverpool this summer

Paisley Gateway

The Reds legend does not think that Christian Benteke will be heading out of the door at Anfield in the transfer window.

Liverpool legend John Barnes has told Omnisport that he does not think it is likely "at all" that Christian Benteke will be leaving the club in the summer transfer window as he says the Reds will struggle to find a buyer who will pay enough money for the Belgian, as quoted by the Daily Express.

Benteke has not enjoyed an easy first season after arriving at Anfield from Aston Villa last summer with the weight of a £32.5 million price tag on his shoulders.

The Belgian international has scored just eight goals in 35 appearances in all competitions and has started only 12 Premier League matches all term.

Signed by Brendan Rodgers, Benteke's relationship with the former Swansea City manager's replacement Jurgen Klopp has appeared fractured for some time, and things took a turn for the worse when Klopp appeared to publicly rebuke the striker during the 3-2 defeat to Southampton at the weekend.

Benteke said this week that he feels "ignored" by Klopp, and reports have been circulating for some time that the second-most expensive signing in Liverpool's history will be one of the first players to be moved on by the German this summer, with clubs such as West Ham United reportedly interested.

However, Barnes, who scored 106 goals in 403 games for the Reds, has made the surprising admission that he believes the striker will still be at Anfield come the close of this summer's transfer window.

He told Omnisport, as quoted by the Express: "I don’t think Benteke’s going to be leaving the club at all. Is someone going to give us money to pay his salary?

"The problem that football fans have is that when we talk about players leaving clubs or getting rid of players, first of all you have to say do they want to go? Because players don’t have to leave if they don’t want to. And whether you can get better players, there’s no point players leaving if you’re not going to get better players.

"So when they talk about Benteke leaving I don’t think he’ll necessarily leave. As to whether he’s going to start or someone’s going to come in ahead of him, that may be a possibility, but I don’t think he’s necessarily going to leave the club."

Benteke's struggles to find form and hold down any sort of regular spot in the Liverpool side under Klopp have been so serious that, nearly 12 weeks into 2016, he still has just a single goal to his name since the turn of the year.

He has slipped further down the pecking order at Anfield under the former Borussia Dortmund manager with Daniel Sturridge, Roberto Firmino, and Divock Origi all seemingly ahead of him in Klopp's mind, and with Danny Ings recovering from a long-term injury it is widely expected that Liverpool will look to cut their losses on the former Villa man this summer.

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