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Liverpool travel to Benfica on Thursday for the first leg of their Europa Cup quarter-final – see all the best odds and expert tips here.

Wayne Rooney is facing between two and four weeks on the sidelines with a sprained ankle, according to reports.

The Manchester United and England striker had to be helped from the pitch in the closing stages of the 2-1 Champions League defeat by Bayern Munich and later left the stadium on crutches.

The loss of the in-form striker is a blow to United, who face a top-of-the-table Premier League clash Chelsea on Saturday and a return match against Bayern next Wedensday.

However, there will be relief within the England camp as Rooney does not appear to have suffered serious ligament damage, that could have jeopardised his World Cup participation.

Rooney can also expect to miss the trip to Blackburn on 11th April and may also struggle to be involved in the Manchester derby with City at Eastlands the following weekend and the home meeting with Spurs on 24th April.

That would leave the 24-year-old with just the Premier League encounters against Sunderland and Stoke before attention turns to the World Cup in South Africa.

United keeper Edwin van der Sar insists they can cope without Rooney.

“Against Bolton we also played with some other players,” he said.

“It can happen in the season. You always want your best players available but we know the players coming in can also do a good job.”

Liverpool travel to Benfica on Thursday for the first leg of their Europa Cup quarter-final – see all the best odds and expert tips here.

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