Benitez eyeing Gerrard return

Liverpool boss hoping captain can return against Fulham

Gerrard: Could return against Cottagers

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Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez believes talismanic captain Steven Gerrard could return in Saturday's clash at Fulham.

The England midfielder has not featured in the Premier League since suffering a groin injury while on international duty earlier this month.

He did start in the 2-1 UEFA Champions League loss against Lyon on 20th October, but had to be substituted after only 25 minutes following tightness in his groin.

He is definitely out of the Carling Cup clash against Arsenal on Wednesday - which is being shown live on Sky Sports 2 and Sky Sports HD2 at 7.45pm - but Benitez is hopeful he can return for the Premier League game at Craven Cottage.

Benitez told the club's official website: "Gerrard will not be available for this game but he is improving, so hopefully he can be ready for Saturday."

Dossena available

Martin Kelly and Albert Riera will also miss the Arsenal clash with injuries, but Andrea Dossena and Sotirios Kyrgiakos are available after recovering from knocks.

Benitez added: "Dossena has been training and will be in the squad. It was one or two small things with him.

"Kyrgiakos has been training. We had bad news when everyone was talking about him being out for six months after the internationals.

"It wasn't that bad because now he's training and he's available too."

Boosted

Benitez has also been boosted by the news that Fernando Torres and Glen Johnson came through Sunday's crucial win over Manchester United without troubling previous injuries.

He said: "It was difficult for both especially because it was a tough game, but they were training and we were taking care of them.

"Now they are training and I think they'll be available for the next games."