Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Liverpool Boosted By Alonso Return

The Reds will have their Basque star back for their derby double against the Toffees...

The Sun reports that Xabi Alonso will be available when Liverpool host bitter rivals Everton in the first of their back-to-back derby dates.

The Spanish midfielder was forced off at half-time in the Reds' FA Cup third round win over Preston North End, having sustained a nasty cut to his foot.

The gash required seven stitches but it was the severe swelling and bruising which most concerned the Anfield medical staff, especially after Alonso missed much of last season with a metatarsal problem.

While scans taken last week ruled out any serious damage and the 27-year-old returned to training, he missed last weekend's 0-0 draw with Stoke City because his injury prevented him from wearing football boots.

But now the EURO 2008 winner has donned his Adidases again in training and will be ready for the Toffees' visit to Anfield next Monday night.

Alonso's return is a huge bonus for Liverpool, as many - not least the fans - believe he has been Rafa Benitez's most valuable performer in the first half of the season.

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