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Benayoun to have horse treatment for calf injury

    Yossi Benayoun is set to undergo the controversial horse placenta treatment from Serbian physiotherapist Marijana Kovicevic in a bid to be fit for Israel's upcoming vital Euro 2012 qualifiers.

    The Chelsea midfielder limped off in the second half of last week's Carling Cup defeat against Newcastle last week after tearing a muscle in his right calf. The initial diagnosis was that he would be out for at least three weeks, missing Israel's home game against Croatia on October 9 and visit to Greece on October 12.

    Last year Benayoun was one of a string of Liverpool players who were treated by Kovicevic and he claimed his recovery time for a similar injury was cut from three weeks to one. Chelsea initially opposed Benayoun's' request for the therapy - which involves massaging the area with the fluid - after Frank Lampard walked out on the same physio after an hour last year.

    But they relented and the Israeli captain was due to travel to Belgrade on Wednesday accompanied by Chelsea club doctor Bryan English. It was originally reported that Kovicevic uses horse placenta but Benayoun insists he was assured the treatment uses human placenta.

    If Benayoun is not fit for Israel's matches he is likely to be replaced by Hapoel Tel Aviv midfielder Gili Vermouth. Keeper Dudu Awat, who played his 200th La Liga game on Sunday in Real Mallorca's 2-0 win over Real Sociedad, would then wear the captain's armband.

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