Brendan Rodgers is down to only one fit senior striker at Liverpool after Fabio Borini broke a foot while training with Italy's Under-21s on Thursday.
Liverpool's £10.5m summer signing from Roma, who suffered a bruised foot in the defeat by Manchester United on 23 September, faces several weeks on the sidelines after suffering the injury while preparing for the European Championship qualifier against Sweden. The Italian FA has informed Liverpool that an MRI scan confirmed a fractured foot.
Though Borini has made a slow start to his Liverpool career and scored only once, in the Europa League qualifier against FC Gomel, his absence is a major setback to Rodgers and leaves the club desperately short of attacking options until the transfer window reopens in January.
The decision to let Andy Carroll join West Ham United on loan before the summer transfer deadline has rebounded spectacularly on the Liverpool manager, with the refusal of the club's owners to meet Fulham's valuation of Clint Dempsey, and now Borini's injury, leaving Luis Suárez as his only established striker.
Rodgers appeared to rule out any chance of recalling Carroll in January when, after Sunday's goalless draw at home with Stoke City, he said he did not "do the desperation thing". Besides Suárez, the Liverpool manager has only the reserve striker Daniel Pacheco plus the youngsters Samed Yesil, Adam Morgan and the 16-year-old Jerome Sinclair as alternatives during Borini's absence.
In an interview with the Spanish radio station Onda Cero, the 18-year-old explained that while Rafael Benítez was instrumental in bringing him to Merseyside, his departure has not had the negative impact that he feared and that talks over a new deal have been positive.
He said: "We have been talking about a [new] contract since the start of the season. We're nearly there: we'll sign soon. I'm happy here, very comfortable. This is the ideal club for me in every sense. This is like a dream for me."
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