Date: 15th November 2014 at 12:34pm
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Striker Mario Balotelli has been sent back to Merseyside after suffering an injury whilst with the Italian national team…

Liverpool’s rotten luck with players returning from international duty injured appears to have struck again.

Widespread media reports this morning claim striker Mario Balotelli has picked up an injury whilst training with Italy and subsequently been released from the squad.

There is some confusion over the exact nature of the injury with initial speculation suggesting a hamstring issue but later stories pointing towards a problem with the 24-year-old’s groin and back.

Either way the severity is yet to be determined and the player will presumably be assessed by club doctors when he arrives back in the UK.

The news will be a big blow to the player who had received his first call up since the World Cup and was set to feature for new coach Antonio Conte for a first time.

Liverpool staff will have been hoping the matches against Croatia and Albania will have helped the former Manchester City man rediscover his best form after a difficult start to life with the Reds.

Since arriving at Anfield from AC Milan for £16m in August, Balotelli has netted just twice in 14 appearances and still awaits his first Premier League goal.

Liverpool are next in action on Sunday 23 November when they visit Crystal Palace.

Kop boss Brendan Rodgers is hopeful of having fellow striker Daniel Sturridge available for the first time since the international fixtures played in September.

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