OXFORD United have been hit by another injury setback after Ben Woodburn suffered a new problem.

The Liverpool loanee was due to be available tomorrow after recovering from a broken bone in his foot 11 weeks ago.

But he was struck down by a carbon copy in his other foot in one of his final training sessions on Merseyside before being released back to the U’s.

Head coach Karl Robinson said: “Ben loads in a very peculiar way on the outside of his feet.

“He was in the process of getting orthotics (insoles) and everything was done to take the load off that side of the foot.

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“Everything was getting made to make sure it didn’t happen.

“Then all of a sudden just by catching his foot in training it unfortunately materialised.

“He’s an extremely talented young man. He’s not injury prone, it’s just unlucky.”

Robinson got the news on Saturday night and drove up to Liverpool on Sunday to speak with Woodburn and his family.

The 20-year-old underwent surgery yesterday afternoon, with United hopeful he would be back playing by the end of February.

While it is a big setback for the forward, who was just finding a rhythm when he first got injured, it appears the damage to the U’s will be limited.

While nothing is yet set in stone, Robinson is optimistic Liverpool will agree to suspending the proportion of Woodburn’s wages which United have been paying.

That would be at least for the duration of his injury and possibly for the rest of the campaign.

As one of the highest-paid on the club’s playing budget that would free up room to bring in a replacement, with the bonus of having Woodburn for the run-in.

Robinson said: “Liverpool were really happy with what we were doing with Ben and I think the relationship is strong.

“We don’t want to say it’s done when it isn’t but we’ve had many conversations.

“If we are where we think we’ll be he’s got the whole of March and April, maybe May, it’s a quarter of the season.

“He could be a tremendous acquisition at that stage.”