Glen Johnson has handed a boost to manager Brendon Rodgers by announcing that he will be back from injury sooner than originally expected. Having initially been ruled out for up to three months after jarring his ankle in a challenge with Manchester United’s Patrice Evra, the England defender has relieved concerned Liverpool fans via his Twitter account:
“Injury doesn’t seem as bad as first thought. Hopefully be back sooner than originally expected! Thank you everyone for the ‘get well’ messages!!!”
Johnson has been an ever-present in Liverpool’s defence so far this season, and has been instrumental in securing the three clean sheets which have led to the Reds’ perfect start. But with a wealth of talent waiting in the wings, an injury to his star right-back is a situation that Rodgers will be relatively comfortable with.
On the bench in their last Premier League match, Liverpool were in the enviable position of being able to choose between no fewer than three full-backs to replace the stricken Johnson, eventually plumping for England U21 captain, Andre Wisdom.
Rodgers could easily have turned to the talents of Martin Kelly – the England international who was pushing Johnson close for a regular starting berth last season until he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament – or Jon Flanagan who will be keen to make his mark after his promising breakthrough under Dalglish was eventually hampered by competition for places.
Wisdom will be favourite in the sports betting to start in Glen Johnson’s absence, but the thought of Kelly and Flanagan breathing down his neck will certainly keep him at the top of his game; fans who bet on football can expect Liverpool to continue their thriftiness at the back until they’re back up to full strength again.