Last Updated: Sat, 23 Mar 2013 11:16
Liverpool will resist the temptation to bring Martin Kelly back this term in order to have him '110 per cent fit' for the new campaign.
The highly-rated right-back, who has one cap for England's senior side in a friendly against Norway last summer, forced his way into Reds boss Brendan Rodgers' plans at the start of this season with Glen Johnson even switching to the left side of the defence to accommodate him.
However, his campaign ended abruptly in September when he suffered anterior cruciate ligament damage to his knee in the Premier League game against Manchester United.
Reds' head of performance, Glen Driscoll, has confirmed that Kelly's progress is going 'extremely well' and he is now in the latter part of his rehabilitation.
However, while there is a chance Kelly could have been handed some game time before the end of the season, Driscoll claims they want to hold him back in order to have him firing on all cylinders in August.
Driscoll told the club's website: "We'll probably look to prioritise getting him back for pre-season 110 per cent fit - 10 per cent fitter, stronger and quicker, more powerful and agile than he was previously.
"He'll probably be in a position where it will be tempting to put him into games again this season. But it will show class and quality if we make sure that he's in a very strong position so he can fly next season."
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