Stewart Downing has been told to "fight" for his Liverpool place by manager Brendan Rodgers.

The 28-year-old left winger has failed to light up Anfield since his £20million move from Aston Villa last summer, and has seen teenager Raheem Sterling overtake him in the pecking order. And, while Rodgers, who replaced the man who signed Downing, Kenny Dalglish, has stopped short of calling time on his stay on Merseyside, he has told him to raise his game.

Speaking to a number of national newspapers, he said: "Stewart is a good guy and a good lad who came here for an awful lot of money. It hasn't quite worked out for him as he would want it. The big challenge for him now is that commitment to the cause to fight, because he has the qualities."

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