Torres Out Of Boro Clash But Gerrard Returns!

Last updated : 27 February 2009 By Boro Mad
Rafael Benitez: "I do not expect Fernando to play at Middlesbrough.

"He picked up an ankle injury in the first minute of our win in the Bernabeu and he struggled on until we replaced him in the second half with Ryan Babel's pace and fresh legs. Torres was increasingly uncomfortable.

"However, I do expect him to be back for the second leg against Real in a fortnight.

"And there is a good chance that Steven Gerrard will be able to play at Middlesbrough. We were not prepared to take the risk on his hamstring injury until those final minutes in Madrid.

"The title is harder after we were held to a draw by Manchester City on Sunday. But let us wait to see the situation after our next two games.

"We have a trip to Middlesbrough on Saturday and then Sunderland are at Anfield next Tuesday. If we can win both of those games, it will really boost us.

"After that we have a week without a game because of the next round of the FA Cup, before we play Real Madrid at home (on March 10).

"Let's see where we are by then because we then go to Old Trafford, a game we know we must win."