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Brendan Rodgers on injuries and Steven Gerrard's contract situation


Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers says striker Mario Balotelli will not feature on Tuesday against Leicester City.

The 24-year-old suffered a hamstring injury last month when on duty with the Italian national team and is yet to make his comeback for the Reds.

"The squad will be pretty much the same," Rodgers said.

"[Mamadou] Sakho trained yesterday with the team for the first time but won't be match-ready yet. And Mario [Balotelli] is still not fit."

Rodgers also confirmed captain Steven Gerrard has been offered a new contract by the club.

"For Steven, for everything he's done in the 16 years here, he's a man that deserves the utmost respect and should be given that time to consider it, because it's a big move," the manager said.

"There are probably many things that Steven will have to think about in a decision like this, but it certainly won't be money. I've spoken to him often and at length and that won't be the case.

"One thing is clear, I love working with Steven Gerrard, he's arguably the best player who's ever played in the Premier League.

"I've enjoyed every single minute of working with him here and I hope that continues, but I need to give him the opportunity to think as long as it takes in order to decide what he wants to do next.

"I saw some things on Sunday which were unfortunate in terms of a rift between him and I, but if there were two words I would use to describe our relationship it would be honesty and respect.

"He's been an outstanding player. It's not so much the number of games he plays now, it's the level of the game and that's something that I'll work with him and look at."

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Brendan Rodgers, Mario Balotelli, Steven Gerrard