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Liverpool morning news, Lucas and Toure expected to start against Ludogorets

A selection of the latest stories involving Liverpool Football Club this Wednesday morning.

Liverpool are expected to bring in some more experience to their starting line-up for tonight's huge Champions League clash with Ludogorets in Sofia.

Kolo Toure is expected to replace Dejan Lovren at the heart of the defence with Lovren struggling for form at the moment, whilst Lucas Leiva is expected to start in a defensive midfield role to allow under fire skipper Steven Gerrard to play in a more advanced role.

The Reds are looking to put a four game losing spell behind them and take a big stride towards getting qualifying for the knockout stages of the competition. A win tonight would set up a winner takes all clash at Anfield against Basel in two weeks' time.

Manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted the stakes are high tonight, telling reporters: “If we want to qualify for the knockout stages – which was the objective at beginning of the season – then this is a critical game for us with the stakes high of course.

“Obviously whenever you haven’t been on a great run it can be even more important. but we’ll embrace that. We have to go and stand up and show that we can get a result and tough it out, and that’s what we will definitely do.”

The Reds are expected to start with Rickie Lambert up front after he got his first goal for the club in the defeat to Crystal Palace at the weekend - as Mario Balotelli hasn't travelled with the squad because of a groin injury.

Lambert told reporters that the players are desperate to put this poor run of form behind them starting tonight.

He said: “We’re all desperate to get through to the next round. Who knows if we can go through to the next round of the Champions League what could happen? I’ve seen what this club can do even at times when they aren’t doing so well in the league.

“We have excellent players here. At the minute confidence has been knocked but that will come back. The players will gel. I’ve seen it before where it takes new signings time." 

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