Liverpool boss Rodgers makes Johnson contract a ‘priority’
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has insisted that handing Glen Johnson a new contract is one of his transfer ‘priorities’ this summer.
Rodgers is a huge fan of the 29-year-old, who he describes as "one of the best full-backs in the world".
Johnson will have just one year left on his current contract once the season has finished, and Rodgers does not want to risk losing the former Chelsea, West Ham and Portsmouth defender.
"It’s important for me with how we play that the full-backs can get up, join in and make runs in behind. We are seeing now the player we all know Liverpool had – which is one of the best full-backs in the world," Rodgers told the Liverpool Echo.
"We want to keep Glen here, there is no question about that, especially now he’s in this form. He’s 29 and we feel that he has still got good years ahead of him.
"No contracts will be looked at until the summer but his will be a priority for us, especially if he continues in the form that he’s in.
"The beauty of this is we want to keep Glen and Glen loves it here. We just need to find a solution which is good for both.
"If we can do that then the club will have a very good player for years to come.
"We have other players like young Jon Flanagan who only has one year left, while Jordan Henderson only has two years left. They have been great and we want to look at those contracts.
"That’s something that will be for the summer. The players can do themselves no harm by continuing to play in the form they are in. The club will then take a close look at it."
Johnson has battled back to full fitness from a number of injury problems, but Rodgers believes that his commitment has never been in doubt.
"It’s been really difficult for Glen because he has wanted to give so much more," Rodgers said.
"He has wanted to put himself out on the training pitch every day and play games but he was nowhere near 100% right. Of course when you put yourself out there you are getting judged.
"That is why we had to give him that time out. There was no timeline on it. I just knew there was so much more to come from him.
"We needed to come together to find a way to get him back to his best. That meant taking him out in order for him to get back to that level.
"Now he’s feeling fresh and playing for the first time in ages without any injuries. Now you see that mobility and running power that he has."