Football

Benitez may call on fringe players

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Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez is thinking about fielding a weakened team in his side's FA Cup fourth-round clash with Merseyside rivals Everton on Sunday.

The match kicks off a run of three games in a week for the Reds, with a trip to Wigan to come in midweek followed by a home clash with Chelsea which could go some way to deciding the outcome of the Barclays Premier League title race.

"We will see. We have plenty of time before the game but we have to think about Wigan and Chelsea. Anyway, I think we have enough quality in the squad," Benitez told the club's official website.

One player likely to be involved is Spain striker Fernando Torres, who has so far suffered an injury-interrupted season.

"I was impressed with him on Monday. It is not easy to play in a derby when it is so intense. He was exhausted at the end but he did well," Benitez added.

"He is very close to full fitness - now it's just about getting match fitness. He needs to play games.

"You know a striker needs to play games and be in front of the goal a few times. Hopefully he can score this weekend."

Meanwhile, Manchester United, still fighting for trophies on four fronts, take on Tottenham on Saturday, and Spurs boss Harry Redknapp intends to send out a "mish-mash team".

Redknapp saw his side taken to extra-time by Burnley in the Carling Cup on Wednesday night and avoiding relegation from the Premier League remains his priority.

"The games against United really is so secondary to me now," Redknapp told Sky Sports. "If Sir Alex Ferguson is listening, I'm really going to send a real mish-mash team up there. I hope it doesn't upset the supporters, but we played extra-time and we're out on our feet a little bit."

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Topics:
Tottenham Hotspur
Football
League Cup
Chelsea
Premier League
Fernando Torres
Alex
Manchester United
Everton
Wigan Athletic
FA Cup
Liverpool

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