Liverpool striker Fernando Torres is doubtful for the most significant Merseyside derby for years after it was confirmed he had strained an adductor muscle - a similar injury to the one he sustained in the World Cup final.

The Spain striker limped off after just 10 minutes of Sunday's 2-1 defeat to Blackpool at Anfield.

Manager Roy Hodgson said the 26-year-old had strained his groin but did not know the severity of the injury.

Torres pulled out of Spain's squad for the forthcoming Euro 2012 qualifiers against Lithuania and Scotland on Monday and had a scan at the club's Melwood training ground.

"Fernando was assessed at Melwood and underwent a scan," said Dr Peter Brukner, head of sports medicine and sports science. "He will have intensive treatment over the next couple of weeks but it is too early to say if he will be fit for the game against Everton."

The derby, at Goodison Park on October 17, is hugely significant with Liverpool currently wallowing in 18th place in the Barclays Premier League after their worst start to a campaign since 1953-54, when they were relegated.

Everton have also had their difficulties in the current campaign and are just one place above their near-neighbours, on goal difference alone.

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