Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson admits he will protect his stars this season and not run them into the ground by making them play too many games.

The Reds are preparing for their Europa League opener with Steaua Bucharest on Thursday night but Hodgson will not deploy his big-name stars in the early rounds.

"It is unfeasible to ask them to play so many games over what is going to be a long campaign, and unrealistic to believe they can sustain it over a whole season," he said.

Hodgson is likely to rest Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher for the clash but summer signing Raul Meireles is expected to make his debut for his new club.