Since August, Stewart Downing has had something of a torrid time at Liverpool. It started with him scoring the first competitive goal of Brendan Rodgers’ reign – since then he’s been continuously dropped and recalled from the squad, been publicly criticised by his manager, and played out of position at left back.
Despite this, and talk of a loan move back to his old club Middlesborough, Stewart Downing will not be on his way out of Liverpool in January. He could very well leave in the summer, but, for now, is set to stay.
Read on for three simple reasons why.
At the start of the season, Liverpool’s first choice full-back pairing was Martin Kelly (right) and Glen Johnson (left) rather than the current, Johnson (right) and Jose Enrique (left).
With Kelly out for the season due to knee ligament damage, Liverpool are short of options at full-back with only Andre Wisdom as cover should Enrique or Johnson get injured.
That’s where Downing comes in handy – Brendan Rodgers has converted him into a hybrid left sided player with the ability to play in midfield and defense. Downing can do a job on both wings or at left-back, which is pretty handy for a club with a squad as small as Liverpool’s – Downing could prove a valuable player to retain at the moment.
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This article was first posted on December 31, 2012