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Liverpool and Cardiff City do battle for the first piece of silverware of the season in the Carling Cup final at Wembley on Sunday.

The Reds have now gone almost six years without a trophy with their 2006 FA Cup success over West Ham their last truimph.

It is also Liverpool’s first appearance at the new Wembley with their last appearance at the famous ground coming in the 1996 FA Cup final.

For Cardiff, on the other hand, it will be their fourth appearance at Wembley in as many years and they will be hoping for better luck having lost two of their previous three visits to the national stadium.

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish, who is aiming to become only the third manager in the history of English football to lift all three domestic trophies, has a big decision to make on who will play up front.

Luis Suarez is widely expected to start and Dalglish must decide whether Andy Carroll or former Cardiff man Craig Bellamy gets the nod to partner the Uruguay international in attack.

Carroll impressed in last week’s FA Cup victory over Brighton, but Bellamy will be pushing to face his old club after recovering from a back problem which forced him to sit out the game with the Seagulls.

Daniel Agger is likely to return to the starting XI after being rested against Brighton with Jamie Carragher likely to step down to the bench so that the Dane can resume his central defensive partnership with Martin Skrtel.

Brazilian midfielder Lucas remains a long-term casualty for Liverpool with a knee injury otherwise Dalglish has a fully fit squad to choose from.

Cardiff are waiting on the fitness of captain Mark Hudson and midfielder Stephen McPhail before Malky Mackay finalises his line-up.

Hudson is struggling with a calf problem, while midfielder McPhail has missed Cardiff’s last four games as he looks to control his Sjogren’s Syndrome, which affects his immune system.

Both players will have late fitness tests as Mackay looks to have his strongest side available for the game.

Semi-final hero Tom Heaton is expected to take his place between the posts after recovering from an ankle injury with David Marshall reverting to the bench.

Loan star Haris Vukic is unavailable having played for parent club Newcastle earlier in the competition.

Possible starting Xls:

Liverpool: Reina, Johnson, Agger, Skrtel, Enrique, Adam, Gerrard, Henderson, Bellamy, Suarez, Carroll.

Cardiff: Heaton, McNaughton, Hudson, Turner, Taylor, Whittingham, Gunnarsson, Cowie, Conway, Mason, Miller.

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