Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has indicated he will allow summer signing Tiago Ilori to leave the club on a loan deal in January.

The Portugal Under-21 international was one of four defensive additions to the Reds during the summer transfer window, arriving at Anfield along with Kolo Toure, Mamadou Sakho and Aly Cissokho.

While Toure and Sakho have both featured regularly in Rodgers' side, Ilori has yet to be given the opportunity to show why the club paid Sporting Lisbon £7m for the centre half, having yet to make a first team appearance for Rodgers' side.

But speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Rodgers has confirmed his plan to send the 20-year-old out on loan to gain further experience and strengthen his hopes of one day becoming a regular in the Liverpool back line.

"Young players need time in that area. He (Ilori) was one that became available," Rodgers said. "He wasn't overly-priced. He will have six months to adapt and then he will go out and get experience.

"Hopefully in the future, maybe long after I am gone, he can prove to be a talent. That is the responsibility of myself and the club going forward to nurture it."

With Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel also vying for starting berths alongside Sakho and Toure, Ilori's first team opportunities are likely to be even rarer should he remain on Merseyside beyond the January transfer window.

Valencia have been credited with keen interest in taking Ilori on a temporary basis, having also been in the race to secure his services before he completed his move to Anfield. The La Liga clubs are in the market to add to their defensive options after the club confirmed Adil Rami will leave the Mestalla in the New Year to join AC Milan, after falling out with the Los Che management.

After conceding six goals in their last two Premier League games, Liverpool's defence is coming under intense scrutiny after a relatively formidable start to the season, which has seen them concede just three goals at home this season.