Javier Mascherano has called on Liverpool to do all they can to retain the services of Xabi Alonso.
The Spaniard's future remains a topic of much discussion on Merseyside, with Real Madrid reportedly poised to take him back to his homeland.
Liverpool have strenuously denied that they have any intention of parting with the midfield schemer, but Rafa Benitez is under pressure to sell in order to generate a summer transfer budget.
The likes of Andriy Voronin and Sebastien Leto, both sent out on loan this season, could be among those on their way out of Anfield, but Mascherano is hoping Alonso will not be deemed surplus to requirements.
"Xabi is so influential. Hopefully the great players at Liverpool can stay and we can bring another player in to improve the team," said the Argentina international.
"It is important when you have the team in good form you keep the key players, and Xabi is one of them.
"For sure Rafa will work really hard to improve the squad and maybe next season we will be stronger.
"If we can keep this squad and improve it, things will be really good for the future. We will be fighting in all the competitions, not just league."
Benitez is reluctant to part with Argentina-born winger Leto, who has impressed at Greek outfit Olympiakos this season, but admits work permit complications may force his hand.
"We will try to work something out, I do not want him to go," he said.
Voronin, though, looks destined to be on his way despite failing to persuade Hertha Berlin to make his short-term deal into a permanent move.