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Liverpool eye Heskey in January sales

Emile Heskey may return to play in front of the Kop next year, if reports linking him with a return to Liverpool across the British press are correct.

The Wigan striker, 30, has been in fine form for both club and country this season, and his current contract is due to expire next summer.

JJB manager Steve Bruce admits his heavyweight frontman could quit Wigan once the transfer window opens, and Heskey himself has done nothing to quell the speculation. "Yeah, I hope [to attract interest]," he said. "It's a nice situation that I'm in, but I'm still a Wigan player and I want to do my best for them. Everyone wants to be playing on these big stages, and for their club to be in the Champions League."

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez may try to sign the former Red in the January transfer window, although he could face stiff competition from Aston Villa and Tottenham, who are also believed to be jostling for the striker's signature.

An added advantage of Heskey's signing in January would be the fact that he is not cup-tied, and so would be eligible to take part in Liverpool's Champions League campaign.

Heskey spent four years at Anfield, from 2000-2004, after arriving for a then-record £11m from Leicester City. Benitez' predecessor Gerard Houllier offloaded the attacker to Birmingham for £3.5m, shortly before the Spaniard's arrival at Liverpool at the end of the 2003-2004 season.

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