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Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez and Jose Reina are among those left at home for Europa League opener

Updated: Wednesday, 19 Sep 2012 17:47 | Comments

Brendan Rodgers and coach Colin Pascoe clearly have Manchester United in mind
Brendan Rodgers and coach Colin Pascoe clearly have Manchester United in mind

Liverpool have left a host of senior stars behind for their Europa League Group A tie with Young Boys in Bern.

Captain Steven Gerrard, Luis Suarez, Jose Reina, Glen Johnson, Martin Skrtel, Daniel Agger, Joe Allen and Martin Kelly have all remained on Merseyside with manager Brendan Rodgers having one eye on Sunday's visit of Manchester United.

Youngsters Samed Yesil, Suso, Andre Wisdom, Conor Coady, Adam Morgan, Jack Robinson and Dani Pacheco have all been included in the squad.

Provisional Liverpool squad: Jones, Wisdom, Carragher, Coates, Enrique, Shelvey, Sahin, Henderson, Downing, Yesil, Morgan, Gulacsi, Robinson, Coady, Suso, Sterling, Pacheco, Assaidi.

Rodgers admits he is trying to protect the club's League season by fielding a virtual reserve side in Europe.

He said: "I can understand why people would perceive us as not taking it seriously but I will always do what is in the best interests of the football club.

"There is no doubt the Premier League is our number one priority, I've made that clear from the off with the position with our squad.

"I look at Real Madrid v Manchester City last night and Samir Nasri came off with an injury but they have a massive squad who can accommodate that.

"If I lose some of my key players that can make it very difficult for us for the next two or three months.

"There were parts of the game against Arsenal (after their Europa League play-off last month) where we were a bit leggy so we have to make sure we are all firing for Sunday.

"No matter what the perception is I know in my own mind I've brought a team here which has a mixture of experience and talented young players.

"I am fully aware that when you pull on a Liverpool shirt you are expected to win the games so I've brought a team I believe can win the game."

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