Mascherano learns his lesson
Javier Mascherano says there will be no repeat of his red card fiasco when he returns to Old Trafford.
By Richard Bailey
Last Updated: 12/03/09 5:48pm
Javier Mascherano insists there will not be a repeat performance of his red card fiasco when he returns to Old Trafford on Saturday.
The Liverpool midfielder received two yellow cards in quick succession, the second for dissent, in last season's clash between the two sides in Manchester.
The Argentine international's sending off came just before half-time with Liverpool trailing 1-0 thanks to a Wes Brown goal.
The midfielder was so irate with the decision that he had to be led off pitch by his team-mates and manager.
Liverpool went on to lose the game 3-0 but Mascherano feels that he has learnt his lesson and will be giving his all for a victory which he believes can kick-start their title challenge.
"It was really difficult for me but I am sure that situation will not happen," he said.
"We are in the title race and we need to think about winning there and then see what happens."
Benitez's side will go into the game high on confidence after thumping Real Madrid 4-0 in midweek to book their place in the UEFA Champions League last eight.
The Merseysiders will want to avoid a similar slip-up to the one which occurred after their first-leg success at the Bernabeu when they went to struggling Middlesbrough in the league and lost 2-0.
But Mascherano is confident there will be no such repeat this time around and is confident they can take their form from the Madrid clash into Saturday.
"From the beginning we were on top of Madrid and we didn't allow them to play. We are happy after that result," he added.
"We know it will be really difficult to play United but we have to try to play in the same way we played on Tuesday.
"We played very well. Fernando Torres was unbelievable and hopefully on Saturday he can be the same.
Difficult to beat
"If we play like that in all the games, it will be difficult for any team to beat us."
The 24-year-old is determined to transfer the team's European form onto the domestic stage, something that is easier said than done.
By winning the Champions League in 2005 and reaching the final in 2007 Liverpool have proved their credentials against the continent's best but have yet to mount a sustained challenge on the home front, up until this season.
"In the last two or three years we have been playing against top sides and we have proved we can beat them," he stated.
"We are in the quarter-finals so the teams are really good but we know, if we play like we did against Madrid, we can beat anyone."