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Hunger is back at Barca

Barcelona
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By ESPN Staff

Liverpool await decision on Gerrard fitness

Liverpool will know this morning whether Steven Gerrard will be able to lead them into their toughest Champions League clash of the season when they take on Real Madrid on Wednesday evening. They could be facing the rampant Spanish champions without Gerrard if a decision is made that his hamstring problem cannot be risked in the Bernabeu.

Manager Rafael Benitez said: "Steven was not fit to face Manchester City on Sunday, but we will now wait to see how he does after two training sessions before making a decision about this game.

"It will not be a gamble. If the doctor says he is okay, then it is not a risk. Steven is more mature now, he would not make a decision that would be considered a risk.

"He will be involved in light training sessions, we will not try to hide anything, we will make a decision when we are sure.

"Gerrard knows he must give something to the team, and if he cannot do that he will know he is not ready. I can trust Steven on that."

And team-mate Jamie Carragher believes Liverpool can win here even without Gerrard.

Carragher said: "We can get a good result without Steven. We have done it in the past, he is a great player - one of the best in the world - and we hope he will be fit.

"But when we won the trophy in 2005 there were plenty of games when Steven didn't play. Obviously we are a better side when he plays, and hopefully he will be playing."

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