• Premier League

Sterling struggling with thigh problem

ESPN staff
April 5, 2013
Raheem Sterling has not been a regular feature in the starting 11 since the turn of the year © PA Photos

Raheem Sterling could miss the bulk of Liverpool's remaining matches this season with a thigh injury, manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed.

Sterling, 18, is doubtful for Sunday's Premier League home game against West Ham, and may need a longer break to get over the problem.

The winger, who made his debut for the club against Wigan in March last year, became a regular under Rodgers during the first half of this season. His form won him an England debut against Sweden in November, and he signed a five-year contract the following month, shortly after turning 18.

However, Sterling has been used more sparingly since the turn of the year, and has not started a Premier League game since the 2-1 defeat at Manchester United on January 13.

Rodgers said: "He's had an ongoing issue with his thigh, so we're just assessing that and whether he needs to come out for a few weeks to protect it."

Sterling is the only new injury concern for Rodgers, who has three players on the long-term casualty list. Defender Martin Kelly is recovering from cruciate knee ligament damage sustained in September, while midfielder Joe Allen and striker Fabio Borini are out for the rest of the season with shoulder injuries.

Star player Luis Suarez, meanwhile, is one booking away from a two-match ban having collected nine domestic bookings this season. The striker has netted 29 goals in all competitions, and it would be a major blow if he were to pick up a ban as the Reds aim to secure European football for the next campaign.

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