Benitez has promised to treat the Europa league with respect and just like the fans is hoping that we can have a good run in the competition. Despite the disappointment and realisation that we do not find ourselves in an elusive Champion's League clash this week but a Europa League one, excitement and an atmosphere appears to be building up for Thursday nights clash.
Unirea Urziceni are unfamiliar opposition to Liverpool to say the least and very unfamiliar in particular. They are a Romanian side who play in Liga I. Strangely enough their nickname is Chelsea de lalomita roughly translated to "The Chelsea of Lalomita", Lalomita being the county of Romania whey they are from.
If they are anything at all like Chelsea on a European night at Anfield then it could prove quite a tasty fixture.
The majority of their team are Romanian born although they do have Brazilian and Argentinian players. Perhaps their most prolific players are long term servers for the club: Marius Onofras and Marius Bilasco and will be worth keeping an eye on.
They recently won their league in the 08/09 season for the first time in their history.
Unfamiliar opposition can sometimes be the worst as you simply do not know what to expect however on paper Liverpool should be victorious.
From Liverpool's side of things we still have a few injuries in the likes of Torres and Glen Johnson. Benayoun is back in training but it does not appear as though he will be named in the squad for Thursday. Jamie Carragher is set to be assessed at Melwood but his injury was not feared to be too bad and if he has any say on the matter chances are he'll be in the back four.
Kyrgiakos will be available due to only serving his 3 game ban from the red card he picked up against Everton for Prem fixtures.
Our loss to Arsenal last week should not really have a damaging effect on the team as this is a whole new game, a new challenge, separate from the trials and tribulations of our current premier league campaign. At the same time however, it is no time to relax.
I would like to see an attacking side fielded perhaps something along the lines of:
Not sure whether Alberto has recovered from his virus yet but it would certainly be interesting to see how he would link with N'Gog. N'Gog was slightly disappointing against Everton and Arsenal but i just feel this is the sort of game where he could nick a goal which would do wonders for his wavering confidence.
Gerrard has to start, and for me so does Riera. Apparently he is still not fully match fit but i just think the aspects he adds to the game we get from nobody else, great attacking option in my eyes.
As for prediction i shall go 2-0 Liverpool, if I'm honest i think Unirea are going to struggle, especially away from home.
Really cannot wait for this match as most of you should know by now, this will be my first ever match at Anfield! Words can't describe how i'm feeling and you can count on a very descriptive match report/blog of my day.
Enjoy the match folks.