Mascherano key to Liverpool’s bid for fourth-place

Benitez believes Barcelona’s interest in Mascherano has affected the Argentina captain’s focus this season.

“At the beginning of the season it was very difficult for him,” said the Liverpool manager.

“But now things have settled down and he is working very hard for the team. He is back to the Javier Mascherano that we signed. His commitment to the club is 100 per cent.”