Liverpool Focus - Borini injury threatens to derail Liverpool's season
It was always going to happen. After failing to replace £35m striker Andy Carroll on the final day of the summer transfer window and leaving themselves with just Fabio Borini and Luis Suarez as the only senior strikers in the squad, it was almost inevitable that one of the two would pick up an injury and leave Liverpool in limbo. Fortunately for Brendan Rodgers, his star forward and top scorer Suarez is still fit. However, Italian youngster Borini, who joined the Anfield outfit from Roma in the summer, could be out for months after breaking a bone in his foot while on international duty.
Borini’s Liverpool career has yet to really get going – the former Swansea star has shown glimpses of potential but still appears to be adapting to life back in England – however his loss through injury has the potential to ruin the Reds’ season, because the Merseysiders will now be more reliant on Suarez than ever before. Rodgers’ men will have to play a minimum of 20 fixtures before the start of the January transfer window and Uruguayan striker is likely to be called upon for most of them.
If Suarez is fortunate enough to avoid collecting an injury himself over this period, then his tendency to pick up yellow cards for dissent could come back to haunt him. Worse still, with so much pressure on Suarez to score the bulk of Liverpool’s goals, the former Ajax man may suffer a dip in form and fail to deliver. Given the Reds’ poor start to the campaign, they cannot afford for this to happen.
Youngsters Samid Yesil, Adam Morgan, Daniel Pacheco and possibly even Jerome Sinclair may be given the chance to step up in Borini’s absence, while Rodgers could also call upon Steven Gerrard to slot in as an emergency striker if the need arises. The situation is hardly ideal, but it could allow Liverpool’s owners to learn an important lesson and realise that a repeat of the last transfer window is simply not an option.
A number of national newspapers have conveniently linked the Reds with out-of-favour Aston Villa striker Darren Bent – a player Liverpool have previously shown an interest in. Given Bent’s record in front of goal in the Premier League over the years and the Reds’ failure to convert a number of their chances into goals of the last few seasons, such a move may well be on the cards.
Meanwhile, it has also been reported that Rodgers has the option of calling Carroll back from his loan spell at West Ham in January. Whether Liverpool turn to Bent or Carroll remains to be seen, but following Borini’s injury and the supporters’ reaction at the failure to replace Carroll in August, it is almost certain the Rodgers will sign someone in the next window to ease the pressure on Suarez.
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