Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 20 August 2014

Torres gives Liverpool a nervous wait

Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez faces an anxious wait for news over Fernando Torres ahead of their make or break Champions League clash with Real Madrid tomorrow night.

The Reds welcome Madrid to Anfield for the second leg of the tie, holding a 1-0 advantage over the Spanish giants.

However, Torres has not played since that victory in the Bernabeu a fortnight ago and has missed their last two games after twisting an ankle.

It is touch and go whether Torres will be risked and Liverpool's medical staff are unlikely to make a decision until hours before kick-off.

Despite coming through some light work yesterday, he hasn't put the ankle through any serious work.

Benitez was waiting to see if the fellow Spaniard would come through a rigorous session this morning and was left to hope that he would not show any reaction to the injury.

Benitez will give him as long as possible to recover before naming his side, with the Champions League their only remaining hope of silverware this season.

One player who will definitely miss the last 16 clash is Yossi Benayoun after damaging a hamstring in training.

The Israeli midfielder suffered a slight tear and will have a scan today to determine the extent of the injury. He could be out for anything up to three weeks with the problem.

Meanwhile, Reds defender Fabio Aurelio has laughed off suggestions Liverpool will be wary of Real.

He insisted: "We are not frightened of anyone. Certainly from my point of view I am used to playing against Madrid every season from my time in Spain, as are many of our players.

"But aside from that, we are Liverpool Football Club and we don't have to be afraid of any side.

"If you look at the last three or four Champions League campaigns, we have been in the last four of all but one of them.

"We have reached two finals in recent seasons – where were Madrid?

"They are a great club with great history in Europe, but Liverpool are also famous in the competition."

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