Sturridge in an England shirt is when not if, says team-mate Lampard


Frank Lampard believes Daniel Sturridge's international breakthrough is inevitable. The 22-year-old forward is not in Fabio Capello's squad for Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier in Montenegro, but his Chelsea team-mate, who is in the party, believes that Sturridge's first cap is only a matter of time.

"No doubt he will break through at international level, it is just a matter of when," said Lampard, who has 88 England caps. "He can be a great player for Chelsea and England." Sturridge was arguably England's best player at the European Under-21s Championship in the summer, and while Capello has not yet asked him to step up into the senior squad, Lampard is convinced that he is good enough to do so. "He has got that extra excitement that people crave: pace and the ability to beat a man and make a goal out of nothing."

Sturridge scored twice against Bolton Wanderers on Saturday, and Lampard, who scored three, attributed Sturridge's development to his loan spell at the Reebok Stadium last season. "His spell at Bolton gave him a lot of confidence that he could do it in the Premier League," Lampard said. "He never got that chance here before. He came to Bolton and scored regularly and looked a really exciting player. I watched him a lot here [at Bolton]."

For Bolton, Sturridge scored eight goals in 12 appearances, including four in his first four games. Lampard recalled how his team-mate returned to Chelsea this summer with confidence buoyed: "He came back with a spring in his step for pre-season training and showed he is going to be a top-drawer player. He has unbelievable speed off the mark, skills, finishing – what more can you ask?"

While some have accused Sturridge of over-confidence, Lampard was quick to insist he had exactly the right approach needed to succeed at the top level. "His attitude is great. Sometimes people can mix up over-confidence with desire to do well," he said. "He will try things because he has confidence in his ability and that is great to see – otherwise you probably won't make it as a player. He wants to do well and I like it. I can see the look on his face – he wants to play. If he has not had his best game, he wants to make it better.

"He has all the ability in the world to make a great player. He will still have to learn along the way but you can never take away that inner confidence because that is what makes you that little bit different and little bit special."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis
The Internet of Things: Meet the British salesman who gave real-world items a virtual life

Setting in motion the Internet of Things

British salesman Kevin Ashton gave real-world items a virtual life
Election 2015: Latest polling reveals Tories and Labour on course to win the same number of seats - with the SNP holding the balance of power

Election 2015: A dead heat between Mr Bean and Dick Dastardly!

Lord Ashcroft reveals latest polling – and which character voters associate with each leader
Audiences queue up for 'true stories told live' as cult competition The Moth goes global

Cult competition The Moth goes global

The non-profit 'slam storytelling' competition was founded in 1997 by the novelist George Dawes Green and has seen Malcolm Gladwell, Salman Rushdie and Molly Ringwald all take their turn at the mic
Pakistani women come out fighting: A hard-hitting play focuses on female Muslim boxers

Pakistani women come out fighting

Hard-hitting new play 'No Guts, No Heart, No Glory' focuses on female Muslim boxers
Leonora Carrington transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star

Surreal deal: Leonora Carrington

The artist transcended her stolid background to become an avant garde star
LGBT History Month: Pupils discuss topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage

Education: LGBT History Month

Pupils have been discussing topics from Sappho to same-sex marriage
11 best gel eyeliners

Go bold this season: 11 best gel eyeliners

Use an ink pot eyeliner to go bold on the eyes with this season's feline flicked winged liner
Cricket World Cup 2015: Tournament runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

Cricket World Cup runs riot to make the event more hit than miss...

The tournament has reached its halfway mark and scores of 300 and amazing catches abound. One thing never changes, though – everyone loves beating England
Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Heptathlete ready to jump at first major title

Katarina Johnson-Thompson: Ready to jump at first major title

After her 2014 was ruined by injury, 21-year-old Briton is leading pentathlete going into this week’s European Indoors. Now she intends to turn form into gold
Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot