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Torres international duty a ‘œrisk’

Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez says he has concerned about Fernando Torres’ participation in next Wednesday’s friendly between Spain and England in Seville.

Torres has only recently returned to action and showed major signs of fatigue during Wednesday night’s FA Cup Fourth Round replay defeat to local rivals Everton, three days after scoring twice to help the Reds to a massive victory over Chelsea.

Now with Premier League action this weekend before the internationals, Benitez is hoping Spain manager Vicente del Bosque will rest the national side’s top goalscorer in last year’s European Championship.

Ahead of tonight’s game away to Portsmouth, Benitez told press, “Everyone can see Torres is not quite up to his full fitness yet after his last hamstring injury.

“There’s no point worrying about him playing for Spain because we know he will be selected, whatever we say.

“The Spanish manager Vicente del Bosque has tried to contact me, but we missed each other. But we will talk. We have been speaking to the Spanish squad’s fitness coach, so they know the situation.

“He was capable of scoring two against Chelsea last weekend but also looking tired against Everton.

“We took him off against Everton because he was just not able to work any more towards the end.

“Spain know our players are involved in a lot of games now and they will take care of him.

“The problem now is that Spain are doing so well, they want to keep everybody together and they want to continue to create a very good atmosphere.

“I understand, it is not easy for the manager. But they know about our season.”

Portsmouth vs Liverpool gets underway at Fratton Park at 5.30pm tonight.

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