Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has refused to give Joe Cole any assurances over his future at Anfield. The midfielder has failed to establish himself with the club since arriving on a free transfer in the summer of 2010, but scored a first Premier League goal in 20 months against West Ham on Sunday.
However, Rodgers would not say whether the performance would earn the 31-year-old a more regular place in the first team.
“I’m just going along game by game,” he said, according to the Liverpool Echo.
“There is every opportunity for every player.
“It’s not just about the games. Every player gets a chance every single day to show what they are all about.
“Joe just has to continue to look to get that consistency in his fitness. He’s a terrific lad and I feel for him at times. He’s working so hard and wants to do well for the club.”
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Given Cole’s sizable salary, the former Chelsea man would appear a likely candidate to be moved on in order that Rodgers can spend funds elsewhere. With his former West Ham boss Harry Redknapp taking charge at Queens Park Rangers, Cole has been linked with a move to Loftus Road.
“Is his future here? You would have to ask him that,” Rodgers added. “The guy is still a Liverpool player and while he’s a Liverpool player I’ll work as hard as I can with my staff to try to make him the best we possibly can.
“If he’s not going to play as often as he wants then he’s no different to any player really. Players are about game time and money. But he’s not any kind of problem, he’s a good guy and we will see what happens over the coming months.”
One player that Liverpool will almost certainly be determined not to lose is defender Daniel Agger. The Danish center-back was reportedly the subject of an approach from Manchester City in the summer and the Premier League champions could renew that interest in January, according to the Daily Mirror.
If the Reds receive a bid of around £25 million, it is claimed that they could sanction Agger’s sale. And, it is believed that Liverpool are already eyeing up potential replacements.
High on Rodgers’ list of targets is young Feyenoord star Stefan de Vrij, according to the Mirror. The 20-year-old has so far refused to sign a long-term contract with the Dutch side and may well be available next month.
Rodgers could also move for a defender that he knows well in Swansea’s Ashley Williams. While it has been reported that Rodgers agreed not to bid for any of his former Swansea players for a year after moving to Anfield, the Mirror suggests that the Welsh club may be willing to do business in January if the price is right.
Liverpool’s main objective next month, though, is likely to remain improving their attacking options. In the summer, the club were strongly linked to Barcelona wide forward Cristian Tello, who was reportedly unsettled at the Camp Nou.
The 21-year-old has now finally signed a new deal at the club, but, with the contract having a buyout clause of just €10 million (£8.1 million), Liverpool’s interest may well not be deterred.