Aquilani set for Italy return

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Liverpool midfielder Alberto Aquilani is set to be loaned out to a club back in his native Italy.

Aquilani has struggled to make an impact at Anfield since his £20million arrival from Roma last summer.

The 26-year-old was signed by former Reds manager Rafael Benitez as a replacement for the influential Xabi Alonso but his first season on Merseyside was hampered by injuries.

Aquilani was not included in Liverpool's squad for Thursday night's Europa League play-off against Trabzonspor and discussions are under way over a possible move.

Current boss Roy Hodgson said: "At the moment we are considering possibly loaning him to an Italian club, but nothing is sure about that yet so I don't have anything definite to report.

"I didn't want to use him (against Trabzonspor) just in case the loan goes through, because for Aquilani this year it's very important that he plays regular football, every week, as the number one man on the teamsheet.

"I can't promise him that here so if a loan move to Italy could help him in that respect it might be good for all parties.

"It would certainly be what he needs, it would certainly protect the value of the player and when he does return to Liverpool no doubt we will see the Aquilani that we signed before he came here injured last year."

Aquilani had a history of injury problems when he joined Liverpool and it was more than two months into last season before he made his debut for the club.

Hodgson has given no indication as to which Italian club he could join but he was linked with Juventus - from whom Liverpool have just signed midfielder Christian Poulsen - earlier in the year.

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