Jordon Ibe is set to agree a new long-term Liverpool contract and is expected to put pen-to-paper on the new deal within the next two weeks.
This is according to Express journalist Paul Joyce, who also understands Ibe is set to return to action against Newcastle United this evening following several weeks on the sidelines with a knee ligament injury.
The 19-year-old is expected to sign an incentivised contract worth in the region of £30,000-a-week, keeping him tied to Anfield until at least 2020.
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Positive news for Brendan Rodgers
This news will be a welcome development not only for the Liverpool fans but also the club's increasingly beleaguered manager Brendan Rodgers, whose side now stand very little chance of securing Champions League qualification for a second consecutive season following back-to-back defeats against Manchester United and Arsenal.
The lack of progress regarding the contract extensions of Raheem Sterling and Jordan Henderson has left a cloud over the Merseyside outfit in recent weeks, as has the team's untimely dip in form, but the fact Ibe is poised to commit his long-term future to the Reds will lift everyone at Anfield.
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Rodgers: Ibe has been sensational in training
“Young Jordon Ibe will come back in and I’ve got to say he’s looked absolutely sensational in training,” Rodgers told reporters ahead of tonight's Premier League fixture at Anfield. “He’s been out for a while but he’s been a couple of weeks now out on the field doing his preparation work and he’s joined in the training. He’s looked absolutely outstanding.
“He’s got real natural fitness and he’ll come into the squad for Monday night. Jordon excites people. For a kid of that age – he’s just turned 19 in December, remember – it was about helping him to take the steps into the first team.
“He’s a classic example of where you’ve got to map out a young player and his development, in order to put him in. Now, he looks very much a first-team player.
“He’s had a couple of loan spells, he’s had first team football, he’s come back and then obviously he picked up the injury. But he’s back now, and I see a significant difference in him, in both his confidence and the maturity in his game.”
Ibe could be the man to replace Sterling
Ibe, the England Under-20 international, has flourished since being recalled from his loan spell at Derby County in January.
The teenager was named Man of the Match on his first match back at Anfield against local rivals Everton and impressed three days later in a 3-2 win over Tottenham.
Ibe made a total of seven appearances for Liverpool before his untimely injury, but will be keen to make up for lost time by continuing from where he left off against the Magpies.
If Liverpool's worst fears are realised and Sterling ends up leaving Anfield this summer, Ibe could be a ready-made replacement for the in-demand England international.
Blessed with similar characteristics, Ibe is a player who could be worth a fortune in the near future, and Liverpool are doing the right thing by tying him down to a new long-term deal.
Could Jordon Ibe replace Raheem Sterling at Liverpool? Have your say in the comments below!
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