Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Torres & Mascherano Fit for Upton Park

LIVERPOOL are set to welcome back two of their international stars for Saturday's crunch Premier League clash at West Ham.

Fernando Torres, who missed Sunday's win over Newcastle with a hamstring niggle, and Javier Mascherano, who was substituted with an ankle problem, are both in line for a return at Upton Park where the Reds will be looking for three points to maintain pressure Manchester United at the top of the league table.

However Xabi Alonso, who was the victim of Joey Barton's crude lunge that led to Newcastle midfielder's red card, is still struggling with that knock and may struggle to face Gianfranco Zola's side.

Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez said, "Xabi is the main doubt for the weekend

"He has been working and hopefully he will be better in a few days. He is improving but we have to wait.

"We'll have to check him for the weekend because it is more serious than Mascherano's injury."

Benitez is also hopeful Fernando Torres will have the chance to add to his 16 goals this season against the Hammers.

"He is training with the physios and maybe tomorrow he will start training with the rest of the team," said Benitez. "I think he will make the weekend."

Meanwhile, Torres is likely to travel with Spain to the Confederations Cup in South Africa next month, but Benitez optimistic his star striker will have plenty of recuperation time during the summer.

"We have to work together with the fitness coaches and also the doctors of Spain during the summer and hopefully it will be okay for him", Benitez said.

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