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More of the same from Sturridge

18 Aug 2014 06:46:52

More of the same from Sturridge

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers expects striker Daniel Sturridge to maintain his brilliant early form for the club and so lessen the impact of Luis Suarez's departure.

Last season the pair scored 52 league goals between them but following the Uruguayan's £75million departure to Barcelona his former team-mate came to the fore with the winner in a 2-1 victory over Southampton.

It was Sturridge's 36th goal in 50 appearances for the club and only George Allan, with 41 in the late 19th century, scored more in that period.

"For Daniel, it was just a continuation, showing he can get goals," said Rodgers.

"That is 36 goals in 50 appearances which is (almost) the best of any striker in Liverpool's history. That shows the level he is at.

"He always looks like he will score. It was a poacher's goal, one of those where you anticipate a knockdown."

The knockdown came from Raheem Sterling, who had scored the first-half opener after a brilliant through-ball by Jordan Henderson with the outside of his weaker left foot.

Full-back Nathaniel Clyne smashed home the equaliser as Southampton seized the initiative after the break only for Sturridge to ensure Suarez was not missed - for now at least.

The Uruguayan may have gone but he is still never far from a mention where Liverpool are concerned and Rodgers revealed the striker had not yet forgotten about his former team-mates.

"He sent us a lovely text wishing us all the best, which was a great gesture. He is a friend now of Liverpool," added the Reds boss.

"I texted him back. He's a great boy but he is gone now.

"We do still want another striker but that will depend on the availability. Sunday was about winning and we got there."

Despite the critics predicting a tough time for Southampton after a summer exodus of players and their manager, they performed well and during the second half especially looked capable of repeating last season's victory at Anfield.

"I think we played a great second half, after 1-1 I think there was one team on the pitch playing and it was Southampton," said new boss Ronald Koeman.

"We had a chance to score the second one, two great opportunities but the quality of Liverpool, they don't need many opportunities to score and that makes the difference.

"The way we played I think brings us a lot of confidence."


PA

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