Fulham v Liverpool

Barclays Premier League

Craven Cottage

Monday, December 5. Kick-off: 2000

TEAM NEWS

Fulham winger Damien Duff has suffered a recurrence of an old calf injury and will miss out.

However, forward trio Moussa Dembele, Clint Dempsey and Bryan Ruiz are all in contention for Martin Jol's side.

For Liverpool, Lucas Leiva has been sidelined for the remainder of the season after suffering anterior cruciate ligament damage during last week's Carling Cup encounter with Chelsea.

Reds skipper Steven Gerrard is still unavailable for contention, and Jay Spearing could come in for Kenny Dalglish.

 

Carragher backs Spearing role




 

Jamie Carragher has backed Jay Spearing to slot into the Liverpool midfield in the absence of Lucas Leiva and Steven Gerrard.

Lucas is out for the season after undergoing surgery following an anterior cruciate ligament injury in last weekend's Carling Cup quarter-final victory at Chelsea.

Gerrard, meanwhile, is still sidelined with an ankle injury, and no date has yet been put on the return of the Reds skipper.

Spearing has struggled to force himself into Kenny Dalglish's starting XI this season, despite ending last term in impressive fashion in the centre of midfield.

The 23-year-old particularly excelled in the 5-2 win over Fulham at Craven Cottage in May, and Carragher hopes Spearing can do the same on Monday night.

"It's up to someone else now to come in and try to do as good a job as Lucas was doing," the veteran defender told the official Liverpool website.

"That won't be easy as he's been as good as anyone in that position in the Premier League this season.

"But Jay was outstanding towards the end of last season. He was superb in our win at Fulham."

He added: "No-one will be worried one bit about putting Jay in there. He's proven before that he's more than good enough at this level and I'm sure he will prove it again."

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