In between two serious injuries during his one and only season at Roma, Fabio Borini went on a run of eight goals in just nine Serie A matches.
It was a run of form that showed just how good he had the potential to be. In fact, it showed how good he already was.
And it was no surprise when he returned to the Premier League – this time to Liverpool – the following summer, becoming Brendan Rodgers’ first signing at Anfield.
However, a metatarsal fracture saw him spend the vast majority of that season on the side-lines, and he would be blighted by a further injury upon his return. As a result, the Italian made just 20 appearances in all competitions, and found the net just twice.
But this season is another story, with Borini – now on loan at Sunderland – enjoying a fantastic spell in front of goal.
The 22-year-old may not yet be prolific, but he does pick his moments, scoring against Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City in the Black Cats’ League Cup campaign, and scoring both home and away in the league against Newcastle United.
In short, Borini is fast-becoming a man for the big occasion. And were it not for an outstanding last-second challenge from Vincent Kompany as Borini bared down on City’s goal, the striker could have put Sunderland 2-0 up at Wembley.
So here is the question: Considering Borini’s age and his ability in front of goal, would Liverpool fans rather have him back in the first-team fold next season, or bring in a new striker?
Considering Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge will remain Rodgers’ first-choice duo when fit and available, bringing in another striker who would demand the same treatment could also invite something of a headache for the Liverpool boss.
But Borini has shown that both from the bench and from kick-off, he knows where the goal is, and his age is such that he is likely to be considerably more patient for his chances than some of the strikers the Reds are likely to be linked with this summer.
So what do you think: Borini or a new arrival? Let us know by voting below:
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