Champions League news

Luis Garcia relishing ''special'' Anfield return

November 4, 2008

Former Liverpool forward Luis Garcia is looking forward to walking out at Anfield again - only this time in the colours of Atletico Madrid.

The Spanish club arrived on Merseyside on Monday ahead of their Champions League D clash with Rafael Benitez's side and Luis Garcia was immediately in familiar territory.

''This will be a special game for me personally, but it should be for anyone playing here at this stadium with such a fantastic atmosphere,'' he said. ''I spent several years here and enjoyed the time - it is a special occasion for me.

''I even had a big reception at the airport. I have had messages of goodwill from fans, letters and emails. It is great to come back and see these people again. A special part in my heart will always be with these people at this club and in this city. I still remember a lot of people from when I was here, fans and players.''

The match could also see another reunion with Liverpool's former Atletico hero Fernando Torres poised to make a return from a hamstring injury.

Benitez said he will leave it to the player to make the final decision after training later today but Madrid boss Javier Aguirre insists he wants to see the player on the pitch facing his side.

He said: ''We are aware that he has been injured, but I want him to be 100% fit and playing against us, I want us to be challenged by the very best.''

The Mexican coach, now three years into his spell in Madrid, is conscious there could be a backlash from the hosts after they lost their unbeaten record for the season at Tottenham on Saturday.

He said: ''They could well be angry. We will see, but they did not deserve to lose at Spurs. If you watched the game, you will understand. They should have won and had the best chances.''

Aguirre has 20-year-old Argentina star Sergio Aguero back in the squad, after the highly-rated striker was only a half-time substitute in the 1-1 draw between these sides in Madrid a fortnight ago.

Aguero scored twice at the weekend in the 2-0 win over Mallorca, and he has been linked with a £30million move to Manchester City in January.

But Aguirre said: ''He is very happy here, he is still a young lad and young player and because of that I know he will be with us for many years, despite the amounts of money I hear being mentioned for him.''