Hodgson set to start Torres against Utrecht

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Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson has hinted that he will not rest Fernando Torres for Thursday’s Europa League game against Dutch side Utrecht.

The Reds continue their European campaign with a trip to Holland, ahead of Sunday’s must-win Premier League encounter with Blackpool at Anfield.

Hodgson also said that he may well play Raul Maeireles and Dirk Kuyt on Thursday night, after the trio linked-up well in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Sunderland.

“It’s on my mind to play Torres, Raul Meireles and Dirk Kuyt on Thursday,” said Hodgson. “I think they’re knitting together well.

“I thought Torres was much, much different [vs Sunderland] to the one in the first couple of games.
“People wanted to see his best the moment he stepped back on to the field after the World Cup, but I said he needed games, he needed time.

“He was unlucky not to score one of the goals of the month, with that magnificent control and volley that was inaccurately ruled out for offside.

“It was only Meireles’ second start and there was another start for Joe Cole. There are moments giving me satisfaction but I know it’s a big job and I can’t just wave a magic wand and Liverpool will suddenly dominate English football again. But there were a lot of pleasing factors.”

For Dirk Kuyt, it will be a return to the club he started his career at in 1998. The Dutch international only recently recovered from injury.

Utrecht vs Liverpool gets underway at 6pm this Thursday, 30th September.