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Page last updated at 11:55 GMT, Friday, 29 October 2010 12:55 UK

Liverpool owner Henry pledges to keep stars at Anfield

Fernando Torres and Pepe Reina
Henry wants to keep the likes of Spain internationals Torres (left) and Reina

Liverpool owner John Henry has insisted the club have no intention of selling their best players.

There has been speculation that 26-year-old striker Fernando Torres and goalkeeper Pepe Reina, 28, are considering leaving the Anfield club.

Henry told the club's website: "I can reassure our supporters that we have no intention of allowing the team to be weakened going forward.

"We intend to build on the strength of the current squad, not undermine it."

Henry, who heads the US company New England Sports Ventures that completed a £300m takeover of Liverpool on 15 October, added: "Stories about our top players leaving are destructive and unwarranted but we realise this kind of speculation is also common."

No contact from Man Utd for Reina - Hodgson

Liverpool are currently in the Premier League relegation zone following a poor start to the campaign and the American also hinted that manager Roy Hodgson will have money to spend in the January transfer window.

"We have recently read stories about our intentions for the forthcoming January transfer window and have a sense of humour about this type of inevitable speculation," said Henry, whose NESV company also owns the Boston Red Sox baseball team.

"As everyone knows we are new to English football, but not to sport, and we are studying all options. Opportunities and value will drive spending in January and in the future.

"Our clear focus from day one of our ownership has been - and will be - to improve the club and focus on what it will take to put Liverpool FC consistently in a position to challenge for trophies.

"We intend to build this club the right way."

Hodgson, who took over as Reds boss in the summer after leaving Fulham, welcomed Henry's comments and revealed the change of mood at the Merseyside club since Henry took over from former owners Tom Hicks and George Gillett.

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"It is a very different situation to the one I found myself in at the beginning," said Hodgson. "There was talk then of staving off administration and having to let players go.

"But the new owners coming in has completely changed the face of things and, as far as we are concerned, their statement is perfect. It is just what everyone wants to hear."



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see also
Hodgson warns Man Utd off Reina
28 Oct 10 |  Liverpool
Hodgson insists he will not quit
21 Oct 10 |  Liverpool
Hodgson backed by new owners NESV
17 Oct 10 |  Liverpool


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