Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez has revealed that he has urged the club’s Managing Director, Christian Purslow, to persuade Javier Mascherano to sign a new deal at Anfield.
Mascherano was linked with a big money move to La Liga giants Barcelona over the summer, but it is thought the Reds priced the Catalan side out.
“He is the captain of Argentina thanks to Liverpool,” said Benitez.
“He understands it’s very, very important for us to have the best from Mascherano if we want to win more games.”
After an indifferent start to the new season, some critics have suggested the Argentine midfielder’s mind is elsewhere and not as commited to the Reds’ cause as last campaign.
And Benitez knows the importance of Mascherano being on form for the club.
He said, He added, “I have told the managing director that he is very important to us and we want to keep him, and we will look at his contract when the time is right.
“He is a key player for us and he will be a key player for us during the season.
“I think he is working very hard and in one or two games he was playing well but the team was not doing really well in the other two. It’s more the team than just one player.
“He has to play at the level he was before, but he has enough time to do that, and we know he is a key player for us, and will be for a long time.”