Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson says the club must offer defender Jon Flanagan a new deal as soon as possible.
Academy graduate Flanagan is now fit again after returning to action in January after 18 months out with a knee injury.
The 23-year-old, who was an unused substitute in Sunday’s Capital One Cup final defeat to Manchester City at Wembley, is out of contract at the end of the season and the Reds risk losing the youngster to another club.
Skipper Henderson says it is vitally important that local-born Flanagan gets a new deal.
“It’s huge that it gets sorted out”, he said in the Liverpool Echo. “I don’t think players and people like Flanno grow on trees to be honest.
“You have people like him who have come through the Academy. The fans feel as though they are one of them really which they are.
“His whole family supports Liverpool. He has been a Liverpool supporter since he was a kid and he has had a difficult time for the last two years, but what I have seen him do behind the scenes is incredible really.
“He is a huge player for us, a huge player for the club and the fans as well. It is in everyone’s interests for that to be sorted out soon.”
Flanagan could be back in Jurgen Klopp’s side for Wednesday’s home Premier League clash with City as Liverpool look for revenge for Sunday’s defeat on penalties.
Centre-back Mamadou Sakho is being monitored for signs of concussion after he was taken off following a clash of heads with team-mate Emre Can and is likely to sit Wednesday’s game out, with Klopp tipped to make several other changes.