Martin Kelly is Liverpool’s forgotten man. The 24-year-old has been on the books of the Premier League club since 1997 and made his debut for the first team in December 2008.
The defender was said to be one for the future, but succession of injuries have left him pretty much on the fringes of the squad. So much so that Kelly has played just 15 times in the last two years under manager Brendan Rodgers.
Kelly did look to be on the verge of a breakthrough at the start of the 2012-13 season, but an anterior cruciate ligament injury saw him remain on the sidelines for more than a year.
However, the full-back has fully recovered now and featured against Shamrock Rovers in a friendly match last week. Rodgers believes that Kelly will make himself an important part of the team next season, especially with the Reds participating in the Champions League.
‘Martin has been really unfortunate’, Rodgers told Liverpool’s official website. ‘He was out for a year, he came back this season and at the beginning of the season we put him into some games... He's a quality player and he's a good guy as well - he knows the club inside out... He's a good guy and there will be games next year for the likes of him to come and play in if we continue to qualify in the competitions’.
Liverpool will need to reinforce their squad for next season because of the Champions League, and Kelly looks like that he will benefit. Of course, this does not mean that he can afford to make mistakes, but given his potential, as his confidence increases, he is certainly going to develop.