JOE COLE looks set to leave Liverpool in January after Queens Park Rangers made an approach to sign him.
Talks between the clubs are at an early stage but the Reds are determined to finally get the 31-year-old midfielder off the wage bill during the transfer window.
Cole still has 18 months to run on the lucrative four-year £100,000 per week deal he penned after joining on a free transfer from Chelsea in the summer of 2010.
Premier League strugglers QPR aren’t in a position to match his wages but Liverpool are willing to offer Cole a severance package to help convince him to make the switch to Loftus Road.
Cole returned to the club last summer after a season on loan at Lille. He hasn’t started a Premier League game under Brendan Rodgers and has no future at Anfield.
Liverpool would prefer a permanent transfer this month but if that’s not possible they will allow Cole to depart initially on loan. Harry Redknapp, who managed the former England international at West Ham, believes the acquisition of Cole can help fire QPR’s battle to beat the drop.
Meanwhile, Rodgers will return to the touchline for tomorrow night’s home clash with Sunderland after a virus caused him to miss Sunday’s 3-0 win at Loftus Road.
First team coach Mike Marsh took training at Melwood yesterday as Rodgers and assistant boss Colin Pascoe recovered from a sickness bug.
Liverpool are set to confirm the £12million capture of Daniel Sturridge from Chelsea tomorrow.
However, the paperwork won’t be completed in time for the striker to face Sunderland.