Premier League

Benitez backing for Dossena

Boss admits it will take time for summer signing to adapt

Dossena: Backed by Benitez

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Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez has called for patience over Andrea Dossena as the defender adapts to the physicality of the Premier League.

Dossena has made 13 appearances for the Reds this season since signing from Serie A side Udinese in the summer.

The left-back has competed with Fabio Aurelio for a place in Benitez's starting XI and has sometimes struggled for form.

Benitez, though, is content with the 27-year-old's development at Anfield and feels he will eventually prove a success for the club.

Battling

"The main thing for me is that he is working very, very hard," Benitez told the club's official website.

"The other day against Marseille he was trying to impress. He was going forward well and, okay, he made some mistakes in defence, but he also blocked some shots.

"He is working very hard but maybe he needs to be a little bit calmer and relaxed when he plays because he's a little bit anxious now."

Better

Benitez added: "It's difficult because Italian football is very tactical. Everyone is together and they don't play too many long balls - it's less physical than English football.

"So, he will need time - but the main thing for me is that he wants to improve, that's clear.

"He needs to know the system here and he will improve. You never know how long it will take but hopefully he'll be better in the next game."