Rodgers hopes to keep Mariappa

Hornets boss confident young defender will sign new deal

Rodgers: Mariappa admirer

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Watford manager Brendan Rodgers is confident that highly-rated defender Adrian Mariappa will sign a new contract with the Hornets.

The 22-year-old's current deal expires this summer and a host of clubs are thought to be monitoring the situation.

Mariappa has made 32 league starts at the centre of defence this season and Rodgers believes that Vicarage Road is the perfect place for him to continue his development.

"I'm confident he will sign a new deal because I feel this is a great club for him to develop at," Rodgers told skysports.com.

Excellent season

"Adrian is a guy who is keen to learn and has had an excellent season this campaign, playing week-in week-out.

"There are still parts of his game which we can develop here at Watford and he is still very young, so I am confident we can come to an agreement on a deal which will be good for not only him and his family, but also the club as well."

A host of players have left Watford on loan this season and although midfielder Lee Williamson looks set to make his short-term move to Preston permanent, Rodgers feels unable to make decisions on any other players until he knows if Watford will survive in the Championship.

"Lee is a guy who has been out of the team and an opportunity came up for him at Preston, which was a good chance for him to get some games under his belt," he said.

"It is difficult for some of the players to get back into the side because we have been playing well of late.

Experienced

"Some of these guys are experienced players who want to be playing every week and they haven't shown any signs of being unhappy here, but they still want to be on that pitch as much as possible.

"Until we are mathematically safe and I know which league we will be playing in next season then I can't make plans," Rodgers added.

"At the moment there are two possible scenarios and until that is turned into just one then I can't look at my plans for the summer."