Rodgers expects Suarez stay

Brendan Rodgers has reiterated his expectation that Luis Suarez will still be a Liverpool player this season.

Last Updated: 22/07/13 at 17:27 Post Comment

Brendan Rodgers has confirmed Luis Suarez is in "great spirits" after arriving in Australia and has reiterated there is nothing to consider about the striker's Liverpool future until an offer that meets the club's valuation is made.

Suarez has missed the start of Liverpool's pre-season programme after being given time off following the Confederations Cup, but the Uruguay international's future remains the subject of intense speculation.

Arsenal reportedly failed with a £30million offer for the 26-year-old, who has previously suggested he is prepared to leave Anfield this summer.

However, Rodgers is determined to keep the former Ajax forward at Liverpool and he reiterated that there is no pressure to sell Suarez.

"Yes, very much so," said Rodgers when asked if he expected Suarez to be at the club this season.

"There's been a lot of speculation over the course of the close season but the reality is that he's a player who is very much valued at Liverpool and unless there's any sort of offer that comes in that's anywhere near his value, there's nothing to consider.

"We haven't had that."

Asked what that value was, Rodgers replied: "I didn't say we would sell him! I said that every player has a value and a worth. Doesn't mean you've got to sell them."

Rodgers will continue to discuss the situation with Suarez, but is untroubled by the constant speculation ahead of Wednesday's friendly against Melbourne Victory.

He continued: "As we've always been as a club, I'm quite relaxed about it. He's an integral part of our squad.

"We'll chat at some stage, like I do with all the players.

"But he's back, he's in great spirits. He's obviously an integral part of the group - you could see his closeness with his team-mates last night when they were all seeing him for the first time in a number of weeks.

"He'll join training today with all the other players and over the course of the next few weeks we'll communicate.

"Him and I have been in regular communication throughout the summer."

Meanwhile, Rodgers has identified left-back as an area he wants to strengthen amid speculation he is set to secure a deal for Valencia's Aly Cissokho.

Reports in Spain suggest an agreement is close to sign the 25-year-old on a season-long loan with a view to making the move permanent next summer.

Rodgers admits he does want to bring in competition for Jose Enrique as he seeks to bolster an area he had difficulties with last season.

With Enrique out of favour 12 months ago Rodgers began the campaign by switching Glen Johnson to the opposite flank and blooding youngster Andre Wisdom, although the Spaniard eventually regained his place and enjoyed a good second half of the season.

"There are obviously certain areas of the squad where we're a bit thinner than others," he said.

"We probably need a bit more support - that extra bit of quality - at the top end of the field and that's something we'll look out for.

"That'll be mixed with needing cover in the left-back position - that's something we're looking at.

"It's not really about numbers, it's about quality.

"If we can do that over the next number of weeks we'll be happy."

While he is still working to bring players in Rodgers is also offloading them with goalkeeper Jose Reina attracting interest from former manager Rafael Benitez at Napoli.

The arrival of Simon Mignolet from Sunderland in a £9million deal immediately placed the Spain international's future in doubt and, after an approach from the Italian club, Reina's presence on the pre-season tour - which he was supposed to join last weekend - was excused.

But there are still issues to thrash out with Napoli.

"The latest was that there was an offer to take him on loan but that's something that hasn't been discussed any further."


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