The Reds manager says that the Italy Under-21s international will reap the rewards of regular first-team football after joining the Black Cats for the season on deadline day
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Rodgers told the club's official website:"It's just to get games. He had a stop-start season last year with his injuries and I just felt this year he needed to go and play football.
"With Daniel Sturridge, Luis Suarez, Iago Aspas and some of the other attacking players, that might have been limited.
"I have a real belief in Fabio - he is a talent, and we've seen that on occasions, but he needs to be playing regularly to demonstrate that talent.
"We had a host of clubs wanting to take him but, with Sunderland having the Italian connection there and being a big club where he can go and play, I'm sure he'll get the chance to shine and we'll look closely at his development this year."