Riise hopeful of Anfield return

August 21, 2008 9:05am CST
John Arne Riise today spoke of his desire to one day return to Anfield and thank the Liverpool fans who gave him so much support during his career with the Reds. Riise brought his seven year Liverpool career to an end in June when he took up the option of a new challenge with Serie A giants Roma - but he admits he'd relish the opportunity to one day play at Anfield again. "A change of environment could be good for my career and I felt it was right to look at another country," said Riise, as he prepared for tonight's international friendly for Norway against Republic of Ireland in Oslo. "I just wish I had the chance to say goodbye to the Liverpool supporters because I wanted to show what they meant to me. They were fantastic throughout my time at the club. Hopefully I will go back one day and do it. "Liverpool is in my heart because I enjoyed the best moment of my career there, winning the Champions League, but when you are at a club like that you know something is always going to happen. "They are always looking for the best players so there is someone new challenging you." Riise admits he had offers to remain in Premiership football, but he didn't fancy the prospect of lining up against Rafael Benitez's side. "There was no way I was going to be comfortable playing for another English club and I had plenty of offers from other clubs in the Premier League," he added. "I didn't have to leave, I didn't want to at the start because I had another year left, but I did want to be playing regularly and I didn't feel that would happen this season if I had stayed." Despite no longer being part of the squad at Anfield, the popular Norwegian insists he will be keeping a close eye on matters at Liverpool this season - and he feels their chances of success have been boosted by the summer arrival of Robbie Keane. "Robbie is a fantastic player and a fantastic signing for the club," he said. "I knew he was a Liverpool fan from his childhood and this is the best move of all those he has had in his career. He could be the reason Liverpool will challenge for a title. "Over the last couple of years his work-rate has really improved and he is difficult to mark because he is always on the move, he is a good link-up player and a very good finisher inside the box. "He is a smart player and playing behind Torres could be very crucial."
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