With injury and loss of form interrupting most of the past few seasons for Glen Johnson at Liverpool, agreeing a new deal was always going to be difficult. Brendan Rodgers was vocal about wanting to keep the England international in the squad, more for experience than anything else, but the club couldn't afford to keep his wages the same, and it looks as though the 30-year-old will take his chances elsewhere with The Liverpool Echo reporting that he's leaving the club at season's end.
There's been talk for at least two years that he would be making an exit, and it is finally coming to fruition for a player who hasn't made as much of an impact as he would have liked under Rodgers. During his first few seasons on Merseyside he was among the best in the country, showcasing excellent pace getting forward and well above average defensively.
As fitness levels dropped in the past two years he didn't get quite as much time, however, and now he's caught in between a role as one of the three central defenders in a three-man back line and a wingback role that many would have preferred to see him in three or four years ago. He's not the most talented at any spot in the current squad, but it's also not surprising to see that Rodgers wants to keep him around. Johnson has been an excellent professional since arriving, and he's handled his reduced role well. Speculation that he doesn't care or isn't trying has always been wide of the mark, with little indication that he's been anything other than fully committed throughout.
The confirmation comes at a time when he's nonetheless expected to get minutes down the stretch, either as a fullback on either side in a back four or in that three-man back line. Having played in a few of the most talented Liverpool squads in recent memory, it would be nice for Glen Johnson to see his time in Red end on a high note, and for both he and Steven Gerrard to sign off with a trophy.