Yossi proves worth to Rafa

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Football News

Rafael Benitez hailed the contribution of hat-trick hero Yossi Benayoun after Liverpool's 4-0 demolition of Barclays Premier League new boys Burnley.

Benayoun was at the heart of a dominant Reds display, scoring in the first half and then having an effort palmed out by Brian Jensen for Dirk Kuyt to add the second. The Israel skipper then took advantage of great passes by first Steven Gerrard and then Andriy Voronin to grab two more goals after the break to cap a virtuoso display.

Liverpool boss Benitez said: "Yossi had been away on international duty in midweek and done a lot of travelling, but he wanted to play. It is important to him to show his quality in every training session and every match."

He added: "Over the seasons he has shown his value coming off the bench, but now he is showing how important he can be with movement and passing ability from the start."

Benitez also revealed midfielder Javier Mascherano has yet to return from international duty with Argentina having picked up a pelvic injury in midweek.

It was initially believed he had just returned late, but Benitez said: "He has still not returned. He picked up an injury and it was decided that he needed to have tests.

"Our doctor was in contact with the Argentina medical team and it was decided it was best that he stay there for the tests, and he will be back in England next week before the Champions League game (against Debrecen).

"The problem was a minor one, but we needed to have the checks made straight away."

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European News
Yossi Benayoun
Brian Jensen
Premier League
UEFA Champions League
Dirk Kuyt
Steven Gerrard

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