Rafael Benítez’s policy of rotating his squad will continue when Liverpool host Galatasaray at Anfield on Wednesday.
The coach has changed his Liverpool starting line-up for the last 93 matches and the Spaniard insists that his results, both at Liverpool and in his previous post at Valencia, vindicate his methods.
“Consistency depends on the final score,” he said. “If you change players and you continue winning, people will say that’s fantastic because at the end of the season you will have first place.
“At Valencia we won two leagues and a UEFA Cup. Here we have won the Champions League, the Community Shield, the Super Cup and the FA Cup by changing players, so I think there’s no problem.”
Benítez has no injury concerns and his main focus is likely to be on Liverpool’s striking option. Craig Bellamy and Dirk Kuyt started against PSV but the coach admitted that Peter Crouch and Robbie Fowler are performing well in training.
“Galatasaray have some good players with quality and experience,” added Benítez.
“Normally they will play deep and try to counterattack and we will see if they play narrow or not. Maybe we can find the spaces.”
Galatasaray coach Erik Gerets, meanwhile, admits he will be happy to emulate the 0-0 draw his side achieved in their opening game against Bordeaux.
“If we have the feeling that we have a little bit of a chance to win this game, we will do everything that we can,” said Gerets.
Former Liverpool defender Rigobert Song is doubtful with a hamstring injury and Gerets will definitely be without Japan midfielder Junichi Inamoto. In their place, Okan Burk and Mehmet Topal look the most likely replacements as Gerets sets his sights on securing a result at Anfield.
“Obviously we are not going to attack with four or five players, but we don’t have a philosophy only to defend,” said the Belgium-born coach. “If we come here just to defend we know we have no chance. We will play offensively at every opportunity we can.”
Pepe Reina; Steve Finnan, Sami Hyypiä, Jamie Carragher, John Arne Riise; Steven Gerrard, Xabi Alonso, Mohamed Sissoko, Luis García; Peter Crouch, Dirk Kuyt.
Faryd Mondragón; Sabr? Sar?o?lu, Emre A??k, Ferhat Öztorun, Stjepan Tomas; Okan Buruk, Ayhan Akman, Hasan ?a?, Arda Turan; Hakan ?ükür, Ümit Karan.