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Liverpool v BSC Young Boys


Jamie Carragher battles with Raul Bobadilla

Jamie Carragher battles with Raul Bobadilla

Liverpool welcome Swiss side BSC Young Boys Bern to Anfield for their Europa League group tie on Thursday.


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The two clubs are separated by goal difference in Group A, with six points each; the Reds occupying second place, one point behind the expensively assembled Russian side FC Anzi Makhachkala. Meanwhile, Udinese are placed last with four points.

With two group games remaining, a win would put either side in a favourable position to advance to the next round, but results elsewhere could make qualification less straightforward.

And the Premier League outfit come into this fixture full of confidence having gone unbeaten in their last seven league matches.

Fresh off a 3-0 home win over Wigan Athletic, boss Brendan Rodgers will be keen to keep his team in buoyant spirits and the Northern Irishman knows that a victory over Young Boys is crucial for his team to progress.

But the Reds are unlikely to put out their strongest XI with Rodgers likely to select a number of fringe players including midfielders Jordan Henderson, Nuri Sahin and Jonjo Shelvey, with Oussama Assaidi and Stewart Downing coming in on the wings.

While Steven Gerrard, Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel may be rested, Rodgers might be tempted to start talismanic striker Luis Suarez.

Pepe Reina is expected to continue his road to recovery in goal, after returning from a hamstring injury against Wigan with Brazilian Lucas Leiva also back in training, but he will undergo a late fitness test to see if he's ready for a place on the bench.

Young Boys come into the match, having failed to win in their last four outings in the Swiss Super League. The side from Bern is in good form in the Europa League, though, beating Udinese home and away in their last two matches. To proceed to the next phase of the competition, they will have to beat Liverpool and hope that Udinese can pull of a win in Russia.

The Swiss side travel to Merseyside with a strong squad, but will have to cope without Josh Simpson, Joseph Martinez, Ivan Benito, while Christoph Spycher and Jan Lecjaks are injury doubts. Good news though is that goalkeeper Marco Wolfli, who suffered a thigh strain in Saturday's Super League match against St. Gallen, should be fit to play.

Posted: 21/11/12 12:52

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