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From BBC Sport:

Liverpool's Czech Republic international midfielder Vladimir Smicer expects to return to training at the start of the next week.

Out for the last two months with an Achilles injury, Smicer hopes to be fit for the end of the season as Liverpool chase a Champions League spot.

Smicer told BBC Sport: "I hope I can start running early next week.

"It's difficult to be exact and I don't want to rush my return but if things go well maybe I can play after a month."

Smicer last played for Liverpool in the FA Cup third round win over Yeovil.

He added: "I had the injury two years ago. It's been frustrating, because as a footballer I just want to play and the injury has kept me out for a long time.

"I just hope it is going to be okay and I will be fit for the end of the season."

Smicer has been an integral part of the Czech Republic team that finished ahead of Holland to qualify for Euro 2004 in Portugal this summer.

The midfielder has scored 21 goals in 57 games.

"We've played one and a half years to qualify and I want to be playing in this tournament.

"But there are some important games for Liverpool and I want to help the club finish as high as possible."

--------------------------- Phew!! He was expecting the worst - surgery and out of the season...

It will be great to have him back soon to add some penetrations to our play
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