After a game-changing performance in the midweek Capital One game, Suso Fernandez finds himself in contention for the Merseyside Derby.

Brendan Rodgers has hailed Suso’s determination and perseverance. The Spaniard has been highly rated at Liverpool since he was brought in as a teenager by Rafa Benitez, after fighting off strong interest from Real Madrid. He was used by Rodgers a few times in his first season in charge and was sent on loan to Almeria last season, where he helped his side stay in the top division and was personally, very impressive.

However, doubts on his future have been cast as the youngster’s contract expires at the end of the season and he has refused to renew it unless he is given game time. If reports are to be believed, AC Milan are all set to sign him for a free next summer or for a meager amount in the winter transfer window. However, Suso has continuously insisted that he wants to fight for his place and come in the first team picture. With Liverpool participating in four competitions, the likelihood of this happening is there as well.

 Brendan Rodgers was impressed by the 20-year-old’s Capital One Cup cameo against Middlesbrough.He was brought on in the extra time and he managed to score and bring Liverpool in the lead, and eventually strike both of his penalties to help the Reds win 14-13 and progress to the next round.

The forward is now in contention to face Everton in Saturday’s Merseyside Derby.

“Young Suso was a player that when I first came in, he played quite a bit,” the Reds boss said.

“He’s already experienced the derby in that first season away at Goodison and we’ve seen his impact from the other night. I was really pleased for him, because it’s been difficult for him. We sent him out on loan to try and get games and experience.

“He has come in, put his head down over the course of pre-season and worked hard. He hasn’t had a lot of game time and that’s probably been difficult for him, but he’s never shown it.

“He has got the same appetite in training. You saw his quality when he came on in the game, when the space opened up and even when it was tight, he had wonderful feet and wonderful technique.

“It was nice to see him score off his right foot and he’s definitely one that comes into the reckoning.”