Boss hoping Masch wins gold

August 21, 2008 9:03am CST
Rafael Benitez is hoping Javier Mascherano returns to Melwood next week as a double Olympic gold medal winner after the Liverpool midfielder helped Argentina into the final of the football tournament in Beijing. Mascherano's Argentina proved too strong for Brazil in their semi-final clash, running out 3-0 winners thanks to a brace of goals from Sergio Aguero and a penalty from Juan Riquelme. While there is joy for Mascherano, however, there is despair for his Anfield team-mate Lucas, who was sent off during the second half of the game - ironically for a foul on his Anfield teammate. "It's a fantastic achievement for Mascherano," said Benitez. "To have the chance to win another gold medal is very positive for him. For a player of his age to have won so many trophies and picked up so much experience is amazing. "I have been talking with him during the competition because he is a player who always wants to know the news from back here. He is enjoying the Olympic Games but he is aware of what is happening with Liverpool. "We know of athletes winning more than one gold medal in other sports but I don't know if it's ever been done in football. It shows the mentality he has - he is a winner, he wants to win every game and every trophy. "I have been in contact with him by email and by text messages during the competition and I will try to speak with him before the final to wish him well." Argentina will take on Nigeria in the final after they secured an impressive 4-1 success over Belgium in the semis. The match kicks off at 5am UK time on Saturday morning.
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