Liverpool striker Sturridge out for weeks, but Hodgson happy
England boss was glad Reds forward played with injury against Germany, and says he can 'trust' him
LIVERPOOL striker Daniel Sturridge faces eight weeks on the sidelines after injuring ankle ligaments in training, but at least England boss Roy Hodgson knows he can "trust" the forward, after persuading him to turn out for England when he was carrying another, separate, injury.
Hodgson said he had tried to "test his resolve" before the Germany game, of which Sturridge played all 90 minutes. Since then he has only managed 12 minutes in two games for the Reds. But the England boss appeared unconcerned about Liverpool's loss, declaring: "I'd rather the players got injured now."
Hodgson's comments might not go down well at the club where he spent an unhappy six months as manager during the 2010-11 season. By being so blunt he has "risked opening a rift with Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers", says the Daily Telegraph.
And the claim that he pressured Sturridge to play is a "surprise admission", according to the Daily Mail.
But the manager explained that he needed to see Sturridge in action if he was to go the World Cup: "Had he pulled out of these two games [against Germany and Chile], there would have been one game [before the World Cup squad is announced]. People would have been basing his England capability on the form with his club side and we know here that what you do in your club side doesn’t necessarily have an enormous impact."
As for Liverpool, the absence of Sturridge in the embarrassing defeat to Hull at the weekend has raised concerns about Rodgers's exploits in the transfer market and the Reds' strength in depth.
With the striker now missing for two months, the Reds will be reliant on squad payers to fill the void. The Telegraph says that questions will now be asked about whether Rodgers has signed "enough of the high-class, first-team players the club need to have any hope of sustaining a top-four challenge". ·