Liverpool have reportedly informed Stewart Downing that he can leave Anfield in January after failing to recapture the form that saw the Reds pay £20 million to sign him from Aston Villa in the summer of 2011.

Downing has been an unquestionable failure during his time with Liverpool, having contributed only one goal in 40 Premier League appearances since his high-profile transfer to Merseyside.

The 28-year-old, who was signed by former Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish, has made just one league start since Brendan Rodgers moved to Anfield and seemingly fails to feature in the plans of the Northern Irishman.

According to The Mirror, Downing has been told that he will be allowed to depart Liverpool in the winter transfer window, either on loan or permanently.

Rodgers is prepared to sell Downing for a reduced price as the England international was not his signing, and the former Middlesbrough man's departure would represent further dismantling of Dalglish's squad.

The Liverpool legend broke the club's transfer record when he signed Andy Carroll from Newcastle following the sale of Fernando Torres, but Rodgers sent the 23-year-old on loan to West Ham for the season.

Carroll has failed to score for the Hammers since his move to Upton Park in the summer transfer window.

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