With Liverpool crashing out of the league cup to Chelsea earlier this week, and considering they were only able to draw 0-0 against Bolton in the FA Cup, Brendan Rogers will have been relishing the prospect of Sturridge back fit and playing.
The manager said in his pre-match media conference:
“He has looked outstanding in training, but we will give him another day. I will have a chat with him and overview the week, how everything has gone, but I can tell he is happy and feeling very strong in his own body. At this moment, he looks in top-class condition.”
Sturridge tweeted earlier this week that he is back in full training, and rumours suggest we could see the England international in the match day squad for this Saturday’s game against West Ham. It’s likely he will start on the bench if selected, only coming on if the reds need a goal or 2.
The last time Liverpool played the Hammers in September the game was over in 7 minutes courtesy of goals from Reid and Sakho. West Ham went on to win the game 3-1, but a lot has changed at Anfield since then. Brendan Rogers seems to have got Liverpool playing quicker, more fluid football, whilst the defence is looking a lot less leaky. In the entirety of January Liverpool have only shipped 5 goals, and have kept 3 clean sheets in 5.
Lately Liverpool have found it hard to score goals, with only 1 in their last 3 games. Balotelli continues to look like a bad buy (with 0 Premier League goals so far), 20 year-old Raheem Sterling seems to be feeling the pressure and both Lambert and Borini lack the quality needed to lead a Liverpool line.
This season Sturridge has had injury after injury, and has played only 3 games in the Premier League for the red. We’ve documented his injuries below:
- August: Returned from pre-season tour early with hamstring injury
- September: Injured his thigh during England training
- October: Suffered a calf strain in Liverpool training
- November: Picked up a new thigh injury having just returned to full training
Even if the striker is not fit enough to play this weekend, he is returning at good time for Liverpool , with the FA Cup replay midweek, and then followed by games against Everton, Tottenham, Southampton and Man City all in a row.
Sturridge said earlier this week: “I’m just looking forward to getting back involved – that’s the main thing for me. I’m feeling great. I can’t wait to get back playing again.”
Kopites are equally excited about the return of Sturridge, and are hopeful he can continue his amazing run at the club where he currently has 32 goals in 46 matches. After his long absence, and seeing Liverpool crash out of the Champions League without being able to help, we hope Sturridge finds form quickly and stays injury-free for the rest of the season.