Daniel Sturridge
Sturridge faces missing a sixth game in succession against Basel Getty Images/Alex Livesey

Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge is set to miss the Champions League group game at FC Basel after being absent from the flight to Switzerland on Tuesday.

Sturridge has missed the Reds' last five games with a thigh injury picked up on international duty but was due to be assessed by club medical staff ahead of the club's second group match.

However, the England international is in line to miss a sixth game in a row after being absent from a succession of photos from Liverpool's flight to Basel on Tuesday, taken by a host of current first team players.

Photos posted on Twitter and Instagram by Jose Enrique, Lazar Markovic and Brad Jones all omitted Sturridge and added to the belief the Liverpool striker has again failed to prove his fitness after nearly four weeks out of action.

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Ready for Basel👊 #UCL

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Brendan Rodgers, the Liverpool manager, had been hopeful Sturridge could be recalled for the Merseyside derby against Everton but it now appears likely the 25-year-old's return could be delayed until after the international break.

"He wasn't really close for this [Everton] game," Rodgers said. "We needed to see if he could train on the Friday, but I got the message on the Thursday night that he would struggle, so he wasn't really close to playing.

"I'll see how he is [for Basel]. He wasn't far away for Everton, but he certainly wasn't fit enough to be on the bench."

In Sturridge's absence Liverpool have struggled in front of goal, scoring just six times in five games – in stark contrast to last term when they recorded a century of goals as the club finished second in the Premier League.

Mario Balotelli, Fabio Borini and Rickie Lambert have all mis-fired for Liverpool this season, with the trio having netted just once between them this term, and Rodgers has bemoaned the loss of Sturridge's pace.

"It helps to have that pace," he added. "Especially when you are 1-0 up and the opposition has to come on to you. That pace through the middle can help then.

"But Daniel is obviously a top talent, whatever part of the game he comes into. And he's not far away from being back playing.

"We want to score goals, but I believe that as the season goes on we will become better and better at that."