Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher has hinted the club could part company with Daniel Sturridge if his injury worries do not subside.
Sturridge was limited to 18 appearances in all competitions last term and has been restricted to just three outings this season.
The England international striker suffered another setback having been on the bench in last weekend’s 4-1 win at Manchester City, with a foot problem picked up in training ruling him out of Thursday’s 2-1 Europa League victory over Bordeaux.
Manager Jurgen Klopp insisted the issue is not serious and dismissed fears over Sturridge’s long-term fitness, saying his body had to “learn what is serious pain and what is only pain”.
Carragher wrote in his column in The Daily Mail: “When Daniel Sturridge is fit and firing, Sergio Aguero is the only striker who is better than him in the Premier League. That’s how highly I rate Daniel.
“The one thing I remember most of all from being his team-mate is that he had to feel 100 per cent right mentally and physically in order to play.
“The thing is, with professional football, it’s not often any player will take to the field 100 per cent fit. There is always a knock or something niggling and when that is the case, you just grit your teeth and get through it.
“But Sturridge’s continued unavailability is presenting Liverpool with a problem now. If they put him up for sale, every top club bar Manchester City would take him over their strikers, but how long can Liverpool wait for him to be ready?
“Do the club start to think they need to move him on, to get a good fee and save on his big wages?
“Christian Benteke’s arrival was a statement from the owners and [former manager] Brendan Rodgers that they could no longer rely on Sturridge and it looks as if Harry Kane has overtaken him with England through his consistent availability and his performances.
“I’m a massive fan of Kane but a fully-fit Sturridge is better. Daniel’s problem now, though, is that he’s being remembered more for injuries than goals. And he is the only man who can change that perception.”