Mario Balotelli
Mario Balotelli has scored just four times this season and will be absent again (Getty Images)

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers will again be without a recognised striker for the visit of Queens Park Rangers after ruling Mario Balotelli out of the clash on 2 May.

Speaking to the press on 1 May, the Reds boss confirmed the Italy striker suffered a foot injury in the 1-0 defeat to Hull City.

Midfielder Lucas Leiva is once again available, while Spanish full-back Alberto Moreno will face a late fitness test. Mamadou Sakho remains out.

In recent days, Rodgers has underlined his desire to bring another striker to the club after a season where Liverpool have struggled to find the back of the net.

Striker Daniel Sturridge, currently sidelined with a hip problem, is unlikely to play again this season after a campaign tormented by injury but work is already under way to ensure he is fully fit for next season.

"We have found some underlying issues related to Dan's problems," Rodgers said. "Staff here are liasing with great medics in America. Daniel wants to be available, unfortunate for him on the back of how fantastic he was last season."

Flanagan out for the foreseeable future

Rodgers also confirmed reports on 30 April that full-back Jon Flanagan is set to miss another six to nine months. The 22-year-old suffered knee damage in pre-season and has twice undergone surgery this campaign.

He returned to training in March and had been expected to return before the end of the season but a setback leaves his future at the club in the balance, with his current deal to expire this summer.

Rodgers said: "He's been a big miss for us. Second half of last season he was arguably the best full-back in the league. He is a real strong character, Jon. He trained last week and looked brilliant. But for him and his career we felt that he needed the operation."

Liverpool's 1-0 defeat to Hull City on 28 April acted as another huge blow to their hopes of catching Manchester United and grabbing a top-four spot. The gap between the two sides stands at seven points with four games remaining but Rodgers is not giving up hope on clinching a Champions League spot just yet.

The manager said: "It would be a disappointment, but it's never over until the final whistle blows. We have to keep working to the end. When I came to Liverpool I knew how the model works. We won 10 out of 13 and confidence was high. In a couple of big games we fell short and that can dent your confidence."