Liverpool boss looking to Gerrard for derby inspiration

Reds boss Rafael Benitez wants local lad Steven Gerrard to lead Liverpool to derby glory over Everton.

Reds boss Rafael Benitez wants local lad Steven Gerrard to lead Liverpool to derby glory over Everton.

The Spaniard said: "It was a pity that Steven was denied his 100th goal for Liverpool against Stoke, but that I am sure will only motivate him more to score against Everton.

"Especially in a derby, it would be fantastic for him to get that goal, and I believe he can.

"He is always important to us. But more so in these type of games when local players are involved. Everyone knows he is key to us, and in this game more so.

"He can change games, win games and if he is not playing well he can still score and win matches for us.

"If he is playing well he is indestructible. He has the mentality and passion for these games and he is important to all the other players."

Benitez continued: "We have started the season well. We are improving, but only at 60 per cent of our potential at the moment. If we keep improving we will get closer to what we want.

"I know that last season at Goodison Park I took Steven off because maybe he was playing with too much passion. At that point we needed to keep possession against 10 men, we needed to keep control.

"That was the idea. And it was Lucas - who came on and was calmer and more relaxed - who was able to create our winner. That was an important decision for the team, something I had to do. Maybe this time it will be Steven who wins the game for us."

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