In his new book, Benitez states: “Attempting to work in the transfer market that summer was almost impossible.
“We knew we would need cover and support for Fernando Torres, as David Ngog was still developing, and we had raised the cash to find it.
“The player we identified to fill that role was Stevan Jovetic, a young Montenegro forward playing for Fiorentina in Italy.
“The two players we had identified were Sylvain Distin, then with Portsmouth, and West Ham’s Matthew Upson, both boasting abundant Premier League experience.
“Signing one of those two, plus the tall, powerful, intelligent Jovetic, would have given Liverpool the squad we needed to build on the previous year’s title challenge, when we had run Manchester United so close.”