• Defender John Flanagan previously last played for Liverpool in May 2014
  • He had two operations on his left knee, keeping him out for 19 months
  • On Tuesday he played 30 minutes for the Under 21s against Fleetwood  
  • Flanagan’s contract at Liverpool is set to expire at the end of the season 

Jack Bezants for MailOnline

Jon Flanagan took an important step in his bid to return to the Liverpool first team on Monday by lining up for their Under 21 side against Fleetwood Town.

Flanagan had not played for Liverpool since their 2-1 victory against Newcastle in May 2014, with his last appearance an England friendly against Ecuador, due to two operations on his left knee.

The 22-year-old has been injured for 19 months, first having surgery in September 2014 after being troubled by fluid on his knee, before a second procedure in April 2015 to repair cartilage.

Jon Flanagan last played for Liverpool in May 2014, in the 2-1 win against Newcastle in the Premier League

Jon Flanagan last played for Liverpool in May 2014, in the 2-1 win against Newcastle in the Premier League

Flanagan's last football appearance was for England, in the 2-2 draw with Ecuador before the 2014 World Cup

Flanagan’s last football appearance was for England, in the 2-2 draw with Ecuador before the 2014 World Cup

Flanagan will look to use the remainder of the season to earn a contract beyond May at Liverpool

Flanagan will look to use the remainder of the season to earn a contract beyond May at Liverpool

But he made his return to action against Fleetwood on Tuesday, putting in a solid 30-minute performance as Liverpool were held to a goalless draw.

Flanagan was handed a one-year contract extension by Liverpool in May as he recovered from the latter operation, and having been given the nod to build up his comeback, will hope to convince Jurgen Klopp he is worthy of a new deal.

Flanagan has been out injured for 19 months, after having two operations on his left knee

Flanagan has been out injured for 19 months, after having two operations on his left knee

LIVERPOOL STARTING XI THE LAST TIME JON FLANAGAN FEATURED

Liverpool 2-1 Newcastle, May 2014:

Starting XI: Mignolet, Agger, Skrtel, Flanagan, Johnson, Allen, Henderson, Gerrard, Sterling, Suárez, Sturridge

Flanagan can negotiate with non-English sides from January.

The Liverpool-born defender established himself as a regular starter in the side under Brendan Rodgers which finished second in the Premier League.

He was deployed at left-back under Rodgers, despite being renowned as a right-sided defender before impressing on the opposite flank.

Flanagan played 23 Premier League games that season, scoring once in Liverpool’s 5-0 victory against Tottenham at White Hart Lane. 

Flanagan impressed when Liverpool finished second in 2013-14, making 23 league appearances

Flanagan impressed when Liverpool finished second in 2013-14, making 23 league appearances

The comments below have not been moderated.

The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline.

Who is this week’s top commenter?
Find out now