Daniel Sturridge was expected to make a comeback from injury this weekend, but his long awaited return has been pushed back further as he suffered from another thigh injury in training.

Sturridge, pulled up during a training session at Melwood on Tuesday and  has suffered a grade two thigh strain. It’s a new injury and different to the one he originally suffered while on duty with England in early September.

The England international was expected to return for Liverpool’s match with Crystal Palace this Sunday. He last played a competitive game for the Reds on 31st August against Tottenham Hotspur

With the last 10 weeks out on the sidelines, his comeback has been delayed as he will be out of action till the new year. The player is going to miss out the two Champions League games Liverpool have remaining in their group so far- against FC Basel and Ludogorets; the League Cup Quarter Final against Bournemouth, and approximately 8 Premier League games, which include the ones against Manchester United and Arsenal.

Much was dependent on Sturridge’s return as Liverpool have struggled in front of goal immensely. Between the present three strikers, the Reds have two goals in all competitions- both of them being Balotelli’s (one in Champions League and one in the League Cup)- and none in the Premier League. Sturridge’s return would also help Rodgers play his favored 4-4-2 formation with Balotelli and Daniel up-top- it has been played only once, against Spurs, and seemed to be clicking well.

Liverpool would want to progress out of the Champions League group stages, and ideally, would want to win their next four games in the Premier League as these upcoming fixtures are ones where they can get positive results. Their next four games are against Crystal Palace (A), Stoke (H), Leicester (H) and Sunderland (H). After these games, the Merseysiders face Manchester United at Old Trafford. They also have their matches against Ludogorets and Basel in the middle.

The Reds have been struggling for goals and this fresh injury blow could not have come at a worse time. Hopefully for Liverpool fans, Brendan Rodgers utilized the international break to regroup his side and formalize some new plans because without goals, and with the defense they have put out in this campaign, they can’t win any matches. If Liverpool do get 12 points, or even 10, out of their next four games, things would start looking slightly better. Thankfully for them, their competitors in the league (bar Chelsea) have also been pretty sub-par, and the race for the top 4 remains open. But the Reds need to start getting results or it might all be too late.