Where next for Liverpool defender? Newcastle? Aston Villa?

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Poor John Arne Riise. The Ginger One seems to be getting the silent treatment from Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez.

“I have to get [my future] sorted out before pre-season starts,” the Norwegian left-back told reporters this week, still not in the clear about his Anfield future.

“I can’t wait and wait for an answer. I have to get an answer now!”

Given the speculation in the press about Riise’s future, particularly following his disastrous own-goal against Chelsea in the Champions League semi-final, it’s understandable the 27-year-old wants a decision on his future at Liverpool.

Trouble is, he’s not likely to hear what he wants. It’s no secret his time at Anfield is up.
The evidence speaks for itself:

  • he’s struggled to hold on to a regular place in Benitez’s starting line-up
  • he’s cocked up with too many high-profile errors in the last eighteen months
  • he can’t find his scoring boots

Plus Benitez has already lined up his successor in the shape of Udinese defender Andrea Dossena, who is expected to sign in days.

Newcastle are widely tipped to be interested in Riise’s services, but Benitez would no doubt prefer to use him in part-exchange with Aston Villa for Gareth Barry.

It’s not all doom and gloom though for John Arne Riise. He’s on his hols and seems pretty chilled by the whole affair:

“If we don’t get the answer we want, we’ll have to do something. We’re not sitting here and waiting and waiting,” he told Norwegian tabloid Verdens Gang

But after two seasons of utter dross, Caught Offside can’t help wonder: Is Riise still good enough for the Premiership?

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