- LocationBentivoglio, Italy
- Squad Number29
Liverpool secured the services of one of Italy’s most exciting young forwards when they completed the signing of Fabio Borini from AS Roma in July 2012.
The deal reunited the international star with Brendan Rodgers, with whom he worked during a previous spell in England with Chelsea and Swansea City.
Borini started his career with local club Bologna before signing a full-time contract with Chelsea in the summer of 2007.
It was at Stamford Bridge where he first struck up a relationship with Rodgers, who was operating as academy director before becoming reserve-team manager.
In his second season in England, the forward blasted 12 goals in as many matches across reserve and youth-team levels.
By the summer of 2009, first-team boss Carlo Ancelotti considered Borini – now an Italy U19 international – part of his senior plans and included him in his Champions League squad for the 2009-10 campaign.
In total, he made eight senior appearances that season, earned his first Italy U21 cap and was named as his country’s captain for the European U19 Championships in 2010.
By now, Rodgers was established as Swansea manager and looking to secure promotion to the Premier League.
With the Swans entering the final straight, the manager sought some additional firepower to see them over the line – and he knew just where to find it, snapping up Borini on loan in March 2011.
Two goals on his debut versus Nottingham Forest set the tone for an electrifying spell at the Liberty Stadium, which yielded six goals from 12 appearances.
With his contract at Chelsea now expired, Borini opted to return to Italy in the summer of 2011, signing for Parma before being subsequently loaned out to Roma.
His star continued to rise at the Stadio Olimpico, where he scored nine goals in 20 league starts, including a brace in a 4-0 win over Inter Milan.
Firmly regarded as one of his country’s brightest prospects, Borini made his international debut against the USA in February 2012 and was included in Italy’s squad for that summer’s Euros, where the Azzurri were beaten finalists.
Within a couple of weeks of the tournament’s conclusion, he went some way to getting over his heartbreak by returning to become the first signing of Rodgers’ Anfield era.
Borini started his Liverpool career properly in Belarus, where the Reds beat Gomel 1-0 in a Europa League qualifier on August 2, 2012. A week later he would score his first goal against the same opponents at Anfield.
The Italian’s maiden campaign with the club was beset by two significant injuries but the forward returned fresh at the conclusion of 2012-13 and struck a first Premier League goal within seconds of being introduced as a substitute at Newcastle in April.
The forward spent the entirety of the 2013-14 campaign on loan at Sunderland, where he thrived, scoring 10 times as the Black Cats reached the Capital One Cup final and produced a late run to avoid relegation.
That excellent form has given Borini belief that he can establish himself at Anfield – as he turned down a move to the Black Cats in order to fight for his place at Anfield.