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Liverpool V Chelsea at Anfield : Match Preview

Updated 21 Apr 2013 08:30:57

Liverpool V Chelsea at Anfield : Match Preview

Liverpool V Chelsea - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.


No new worries for Rodgers

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has no new injury concerns ahead of Sunday's visit of Chelsea.

The Reds boss may be tempted to freshen things up, however, after back-to-back goalless draws.

Forward Raheem Sterling has sat out recent games with a thigh problem while forward Fabio Borini and midfielder Joe Allen (both shoulder) and defender Martin Kelly (knee) are all sidelined.

Goalkeeper Jose Reina believes he is back on form after admitting he had a rough patch at the start of the season.

Successive goalless draws may not have done much for the seventh-placed Reds' hopes of reeling in the teams above them but the clean sheets are certainly welcomed by the Spain international.

He is now third in this Premier League's list of shut-outs behind Manchester City and England's Joe Hart and Chelsea's Petr Cech, whom he faces at Anfield on Sunday.

"I'm happy because we've already kept more clean sheets than last season but there's still plenty of room to improve it," said Reina, who has twice been hampered by injury this season.

"As I said a few months back, there have been a few ups and downs.

"The start of the season was a bit rough to me: since November/December I have probably turned the corner and picked the form up again.

"Hopefully it will stay for long. As I always do, I do my best and work hard on a daily basis.

"I looked after myself a little bit better in the last few months and tried to be as fit as possible.

"It's not about keeping clean sheets, it's about finding the right balance between attack and defence.

"Because of our position in the league, we haven't found it quite yet."

Defenders Ashley Cole and Gary Cahill trained on Friday and could return to contention for Chelsea.

Cole (hamstring) and Cahill (knee) have been absent in recent weeks and the Anfield match could come too soon for the duo, although Marko Marin (thigh) is available.

Former Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez is likely to rotate his squad once more, meaning ex-Reds striker Fernando Torres, captain John Terry and midfielder Frank Lampard may return to the bench.

Benitez is expected to receive a warm welcome in the week which marked both his 53rd birthday and the 24th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster.

He spent six years at Anfield, helping Liverpool to the 2005 Champions League in his first season, the FA Cup, the Community Shield and European Super Cup, while the Reds finished second in the Premier League in 2008-09.

His family home remains on Merseyside and he supports the campaigners in their fight for justice for the 96 supporters killed at Hillsborough in 1989.

His is a lasting bond with Liverpool, but Benitez's aim is to defeat his former club.

"I'm a professional and I am committed with Chelsea until the end of the season, to win, to achieve our targets," said Benitez, who is out of contract at the end of the campaign.

"I was there for six years, winning a lot of things together. They (Liverpool supporters) will appreciate that, but at the same time they will try to support their team and they will understand that I have to try to do my best and win."







PA

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