Liverpool boss Benitez confident of Torres derby fitness

Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is quietly confident Fernando Torres will be fit for Saturday's derby against Everton.

"He is much better and improving," said Benitez. "At the moment though it is too early to say anything about the weekend.

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"It's always a risk when a player has an injury and we have to be careful. He is back with us now and working with the physios."

Meanwhile, midfielder Xabi Alonso says his chances of making the derby are 50-50.

"I am progressing," Alonso told Liverpoolfc.tv. "In the last few days I have started running on the pitch, which is good news because I've been spending a lot of time in the gym.

"It's always a relief to get back exercising on the pitch and at the moment it's looking good, but I don't know if I will be fit enough to be ready for the derby.

"The fact it's the derby doesn't make me more determined - I'm always determined to recover as quickly as possible. I want to be back as soon as possible but I have to respect my foot. I have to see how it feels."

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