Football

Benteke could feature in the semi-final .

Christian Benteke included in Liverpool team to play Villarreal

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Christian Benteke is a surprise inclusion in the Liverpool squad ahead of their Europa League semi-final fixture against Spanish outfit Villarreal, reports The Telegraph.

The Belgium international hasn't featured for the club over the course of the last month after sustaining a keen injury, but it appears that he could be in line to make his comeback for the club on Thursday night. 

It has been well documented that Benteke has endured a tricky debut season on Merseyside - he has scored just seven goals in 25 Premier League games - but it appears that he could still be handed a shot at redemption. 

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In truth, Benteke's return should come as a boost to manager Jurgen Klopp, who will be without the injured Divock Origi. 

Origi was ruled out for the rest of the season after being on the end of a horror tackle from Ramiro Funes Mori in the Merseyside derby. 

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Centre-back Martin Skrtel, who has also had a tricky period recently, has been included in the squad and could feature with Mamadou Sakho ruled out after failing a drugs test following the club's victory over Manchester United in the Round of 16 of the competition. 

Reaction 

Reds, fans, then, have taken to Twitter after hearing that Benteke could star in Spain on Thursday. Unsurprisingly, the response has been a mixed one from the club's faithful. 

Here's the best reaction on social media: 

It won't be easy 

It's safe to say that Liverpool boss Klopp is certainly aware that it won't be easy for his side to overcome their opponents.

The Reds may well have eliminated Manchester United and Dortmund so far, but Villarreal should represent a tricky task for the club in their pursuit of claiming a place in the final of the competition. 

Klopp, then, has insisted that they are a strong team and claims his team have to be brave during the two-legged encounter. 

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As per UEFA.com, Klopp stated: "They are a pretty strong team and are fourth in the Spanish league. They are having a wonderful season, they are a wonderful club in a small city. It is clear there are a lot of smart people behind their success. We have to play brave football. We are now in the semi-finals. We got there because we deserved it, and now we have to show we are strong enough to go through."

"We have to play brave football. We are now in the semi-finals. We got there because we deserved it, and now we have to show we are strong enough to go through."

Do you expect Benteke to feature against Villarreal? Have your say below! 

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Topics:
Steven Gerrard
Football
Premier League
Europa League
Liverpool
Christian Benteke

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