Liverpool's Joe Allen wants return to ‘match speed’ after nine games out

Joe Allen has been speaking following his return to Liverpool's first-team.

Liverpool midfielder Joe Allen has been speaking about the FA Cup fourth round tie against Bolton Wanderers in an interview with the Reds’ official website.

Allen started the match before being replaced by Lucas Leiva with 23 minutes of normal-time remaining.

It was the Welshman’s first senior action for quite some time, after the 24-year-old had been side-lined with a knee injury for the previous nine games.

But now back in contention, Allen is targeting a sustained spell in the side, after he revealed, “I’ve been itching to get back out there.

“It’s always difficult for a footballer being out and so from a personal point of view, it’s a great positive to get minutes under my belt and now start to get myself back up to match speed.”

Allen has made 79 appearances for Liverpool since arriving at Anfield from Swansea City, and he featured plenty of times prior to his latest setback this season.

But with manager Brendan Rodgers adopting a new – and highly effective – style of play in recent weeks it will be interesting to see just who plays and who does not as the Reds look to maintain their reasonably impressive start to 2015.

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