Benitez demanding more goals
Aug 2 2005
RAFAEL BENITEZ will demand more goals to add to a free-scoring summer as Liverpool head for the final qualifying round of the Champions League tonight.
The Liverpool chief is in buoyant mood as he prepares his side for the second qualifying round second leg at Anfield against Kaunas. The Reds are already 3-1 ahead and Benitez is full of confidence after 20 goals from his side in six pre-season matches.
"Some of them have been friendlies and also we have played against some teams who are not the strongest, but we are still scoring in every game and not just one or two," he said. "That is good for us. I am confident and I think the team is better than last season."
Benitez dismissed speculation linking the club with Michael Owen in the pre-match press conference, while also taking a swipe at Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho for his attack on the ambition of Anfield skipper Steven Gerrard.
But all this is a sideshow for the Spaniard, who wants his side to continue to evolve as they head towards the Barclays Premiership opener away to Middlesbrough on August 13.
Benitez still aims to sign a centre-back and a right-winger, but has all but ruled out a return to Anfield for Owen.
And with Schalke pulling out of the hunt for Milan Baros because Liverpool will not even consider a loan move - particularly to a side they could face in the Champions League this season - Benitez continues to build for the future.
He said: "My idea is to have a good squad, so we have two good players for each position. It means we will be able to field a changed team, but still a strong team for this game against Kaunas and in the future.
"I like to use my squad, but you cannot use the same players all season. It does not work that way. We will approach the game with the same mentality as we did against TNS, we want to score early and you know it will then be a lot more difficult for your opponents.
"We want to score as soon as possible and then try to play well and entertain our fans, because at Anfield we are not scared of anyone."