The Daily Mail says confirmation of a secret meeting with Klinsmann - since appointed manager at Bayern Munich - at Hicks' holiday home in California nearly two months ago increased speculation that Benitez may be forced to accept that his position has become untenable.
But it is understood he is ready to stand firm in what is turning into a war of attrition between the Spaniard and Liverpool's American owners, Hicks and George Gillett.
As Anfield chief executive Rick Parry set up a meeting with Benitez to try to reassure him over his future, it emerged that the one-time Valencia coach may even have a case for constructive dismissal over the way Klinsmann was sounded out about replacing him.
His agent, Manuel Garcia Quillon, underlined his defiant response by saying: "Rafa wants to stay at Liverpool. He is happy with the club, the fans and the city. He does not want to leave."