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 By Mike Whalley

Cissokho unlikely to stay on at Liverpool

Aly Cissokho is set to return to Valencia at the end of the season as Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers prepares to look elsewhere to strengthen his defence, sources have told ESPN FC.

Aly Cissokho hopes to remain at Anfield beyond the end of the season.
Aly Cissokho looks set to return to Valencia.

Kelly: The writing's on the wall

Cissokho, 26, arrived at Anfield on a season-long loan from Los Che in August, but has struggled to make an impact.

The left-back has twice lost his place in Liverpool’s side this season to natural right-backs, with Jon Flanagan replacing him in November and then, after he had forced his way back in, Glen Johnson taking over the role last month.

Rodgers is waiting to see how first-choice left-back Jose Enrique recovers from a long-term knee problem, but is likely to seek additional cover for the position in the summer, sources said.

Enrique, who has played just 29 minutes for the club since Oct. 5 and not at all since Nov. 9, is still recovering from knee surgery, having been expected to return at the end of January.

Cissokho has had a stop-start season at Liverpool, missing six weeks after suffering an ankle injury in only his second game for the club -- a 4-2 Capital One Cup victory over Notts County on Aug. 27.

He then started four games in a row after regaining fitness in October, only to be left out in favour of youth-team graduate Flanagan for the 3-3 draw at Everton on Nov. 23.

When Flanagan sustained a hamstring injury shortly before Christmas, Cissokho was restored to the starting XI.

But after a number of unconvincing displays, he was dropped to the bench for Liverpool’s last two games, with Flanagan playing on the right and Johnson taking over on the left.

Rodgers has always been diplomatic when asked about Cissokho’s future, saying in January: “Aly has come in and done his best. He was not in the team to start with, and then he got injured. Aly has come in and performed to the best of his capabilities.”


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