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Benitez up for the cup

22 Sep 2009 08:12:20

Benitez up for the cup

Rafa Benitez insists he is desperate to guide Liverpool back to the Carling Cup final to avenge their 2005 defeat to Chelsea. The Reds came within a whisker of winning the final in Cardiff before eventually suffering an extra-time 3-2 loss to Jose Mourinho's side. Liverpool travel to fallen-giants Leeds on Tuesday and while Benitez concedes he will give some of his fringe players a run-out, he is keen to reach Wembley. The likes of Sotirios Kyrgiakos, Philipp Degen, Andreas Dossena, Ryan Babel, Andriy Voronin and David Ngog are all likely to start while regulars Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard, Dirk Kuyt and Jamie Carragher will rest up. "We will try to manage the squad for the match and use some different players," said Benitez. "But we want to win and get to the final. "In my first season we got to the Carling Cup final and were winning with 10 minutes to go before we conceded an own goal. "I would like to go to the final again and make amends for that defeat." Leeds have an impressive record on home soil in 2009 and Benitez believes it will be a tough encounter despite the two division disparity between the teams. "I have no doubts that this will be a very difficult match. They have quality and they are a big club with great traditions. "They will want to win this one because of the situation they find themselves in. "They have passion, quality and the fans are always really behind their team." Benitez believes free-scoring striker Jermaine Beckford could be Leeds' main threat due to his blistering pace and eye for goal. "Jermaine Beckford has impressed a lot of people, and there is a view that he is the best striker in the Football League. "He has pace and ability. He scores a lot of goals and will be a danger."


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