Liverpool striker Divock Origi is likely to be handed a chance to impress in the Europa League clash with FC Sion on Thursday.
Reds manager Brendan Rodgers has confirmed he plans to use striker Daniel Sturridge sparingly this season as he returns from a long-standing hip injury. The striker – who struck twice in Saturday’s 3-2 win over Aston Villa – will be a certain starter when the Reds travel to Everton for the Merseyside derby on Sunday.
Sturridge’s absence from the squad is likely to give youngster Origi another chance up front when the Swiss side visit Anfield on Thursday.
The Belgium international, a £10million signing last year, has struggled for game time having returned from a season on loan at former club Lille and is still looking for his maiden Liverpool goal.
He started in Liverpool’s opening Europa League tie in Bordeaux but was isolated up front and since then has only 55 minutes as a substitute against League Two Carlisle in the Capital One Cup.
The 20-year-old has scored just five goals – which includes a hat-trick – in his last 39 appearances for club and country but Rodgers is unconcerned.
“It just takes time to adapt. He is a young player who has excellent qualities,” he said.
“Divock will be judged on goals and games but he hasn’t really played much but he understands where he is at coming into such a big club.
“It is about nurturing that talent and he is looking to improve that goalscoring record, which will hopefully come with time.
“He is a humble guy. He knows where he stands, he knows he’s here to develop and he knows he’s come to a prestigious club.
“He knows he will get opportunities and has settled in very well.
“He had his loan period last year and this season it was about him coming into the club.
“We will review where he is at the end of the season.”
Elsewhere, forwards Christian Benteke and Roberto Firmino, midfielder Jordan Henderson and defender Dejan Lovren are all injury absences.