Brendan Rodgers has criticised England’s treatment of Daniel Sturridge after claiming that the Liverpool striker’s thigh injury “could have been prevented”.
Sturridge missed England’s 2-0 victory over Switzerland on Monday after suffering a thigh strain during a training session, which forced him to return to his club to undergo further treatment. While England put in their best performance for some time in Basel, Sturridge won’t have been too comfortable with what he was watching, as his replacement Danny Welbeck seized his chance with both goals against the Swiss.
Liverpool face Aston Villa this weekend and will be without the services of Sturridge – who could also miss ties against West Ham, Middlesbrough and Ludogrets as well as the Merseyside derby against Everton.
His absence has upset Rodgers, who will now be without one of his most influential players for around two weeks.
The 10 debutants to look out for this weekend
The 10 debutants to look out for this weekend
1/8 Radamel Falcao (Manchester United)
One of four Manchester United players on this list, Falcao's arrival at Manchester United was the biggest surprise of a mad summer. It will be interesting to see where Louis van Gaal decides to play the Colombian hitman - will he start alongside Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie, will he replace one of them, or will he start from the bench?
2/8 Luke Shaw (Manchester United)
Brought in on a massive fee, the English teenager has been roundly criticised for failing to get fit in time for the new season. With Ashley Young struggling as Van Gaal's left wing-back Luke Shaw should come in and immediately be an upgrade in the position. United and England fans will certainly be hoping so.
3/8 Marcos Rojo (Manchester United)
Almost a month after arriving at Manchester United, and four games into the season, Argentine defender Marcos Rojo finally has a passport and should play. Louis van Gaal's team have looked porous at the back and the fiesty defender should add some bite to the back-line.
4/8 Daley Blind (Manchester United)
A Louis van Gaal favourite, Daley Blind is a versatile player capable of slotting in across the defence, at wing-back or in central midfield. Classy and composed on the ball, Blind is a clever player - it'll be interesting to see where the Manchester United boss opts to play the utility man.
5/8 Danny Welbeck (Arsenal)
Danny Welbeck was brilliant for England in Switzerland, scoring two goals and showing all of the energy and enthusiasm that has made him a manager's favourite. Arsenal were desperately in need of cover after the injury to Olivier Giroud and Gunners fans will be hoping the £16m striker hits the ground running.
6/8 Alex Song (West Ham)
Although he never managed to break into the first team in two years at Barcelona, Alex Song is undoubtedly a top quality player. West Ham needed to add goals and flair to their struggling side and Sam Allardyce will be hoping Song can get close to the 11 assists he provided for Arsenal in the 2011-12 season.
7/8 Abel Hernandez (Hull City)
Steve Bruce has spent the majority of the money he received for the sale of Shane Long on the 24-year-old Hernandez. The Uruguayan had an excellent season in Serie A last year scoring 14 goals for Palermo, but is a bit of a wildcard. The pacey striker will look to develop the same kind of partnership Long enjoyed with Nikica Jelavic last season
8/8 Ricky Alvarez (Sunderland)
Alvarez's signature is a coup for Gus Poyet and Sunderland. The tall Argentina midfielder oozes class and was impressive for Inter Milan last season with four goals and eight assists, before being selected for the World Cup. Sunderland struggled for goals last season and will be hoping Alvarez can provide a spark for their strikers.
“The only disappointment for us was Daniel Sturridge coming back injured as he had started the season very well,” Rodgers told Talksport.
“We’re obviously disappointed because we feel it was an injury which could have been prevented.
“He has worked so hard over pre-season and looked very fit and strong in our last game against Tottenham.”
Sturridge is given two days rest following Liverpool matches as Rodgers feels the need to look after his players that use pace as a key element of their game. With England beating Norway 1-0 last week, Sturridge was not afforded the same amount of rest than he is used to, and the Northern Irishman hinted that it is because of the quick turnaround to prepare to face Switzerland that the striker picked up the thigh strain.
“I think clubs work differently at times to international teams,” said Rodgers.
“It’s more the recovery strategy. When we look at our players here we look at them individually in terms of what their needs are.
“Fast players would have a second day recovery while other players can work on that day.
“When you are that type of player like Daniel Sturridge, Raheem Sterling and boys like Danny Welbeck you need to recover them.”
Rodgers could turn to former Southampton striker Rickie Lambert to combine with £16m summer signing Mario Balotelli this weekend, although he could decide to leave Balotelli alone in attack and bolster the midfield by handing Adam Lallana his Liverpool debut.Reuse content