Blackburn v Liverpool preview

Team news for Blackburn's Premier League game with Liverpool at Ewood Park on Wednesday (8pm).

Last Updated: 04/01/11 at 15:29

Samba: Back for Rovers

Samba: Back for Rovers

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Defender Christopher Samba returns from a three-match absence to captain Blackburn.

The centre-back has been out with an ankle problem but is fit to play, along with Michel Salgado who served a one-match suspension in Saturday's defeat at Sunderland.

Striker Nikola Kalinic still has two matches of his ban outstanding so he misses out against the Merseysiders, as does midfielder Brett Emerton who has joined up with Australia for their Asian Cup campaign.

Goalkeeper Paul Robinson is still sidelined with a calf injury while Grant Hanley will undergo further tests after scans on Monday suggested he could have a stress fracture in his shin.

Liverpool midfielder Raul Meireles has been ruled out with an ankle injury.

The Portugal international was forced off in the first half of Saturday's victory over Bolton, and although the bruising on the bone is not as bad as initially thought he will not feature at Ewood Park.

Steven Gerrard, who played a pivotal role after coming off the bench to replace Meireles, appears the most obvious replacement but manager Roy Hodgson has admitted the likes of the captain and Fernando Torres could be rested in a busy January.

Midfielder Jay Spearing has returned to training after breaking a bone in his ankle in November.

Rovers (from): Bunn, Nelsen, Samba, Givet, Olsson, Salgado, Pedersen, Linganzi, EH Diouf, Dunn, Benjani, Hoilett, MB Diouf, Doran, Morris, Lowe, Potts, Fielding.

Liverpool (from): Reina, Johnson, Skrtel, Agger, Aurelio, Gerrard, Lucas, Kuyt, Rodriguez, Torres, Ngog, Gulacsi, Hansen, Kelly, Kyrgiakos, Konchesky, Poulsen, Cole, Babel.

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