Liverpool supporters have been in high spirits in the Transfer Tavern this weekend after seeing their side record a fourth successive victory in all competitions by beating uninspiring Southampton 3-0 at Anfield on Saturday.
Jurgen Klopp’s men went into the international break off the back of victories over Huddersfield Town, Maribor, and West Ham, results which moved them up to fifth in the Premier League table, as well as top of their Champions League group. And the Reds made it four wins on the bounce as a brace from Mohamed Salah as well as a second half Philippe Coutinho strike saw them ease past Mauricio Pellegrino’s Southampton at Anfield, a result which moved them to within a point of the top four.
Thus, there have been many delighted Liverpudlians in the Tavern in recent days, many of whom are eagerly anticipating their team’s return to European action on Tuesday night when Klopp’s men travel to La Liga outfit Sevilla knowing that victory would book their place in the last 16 of the Champions League.
In the meantime though, there has been plenty for our resident Liverpool fans to get their teeth into, not least recent reports which suggest that striker Daniel Sturridge could be on his way out of the club in January.
The 28-year-old has struggled for regular football since Klopp took charge back in 2015 and knows that he must get regular gametime between now and the end of the season to get into Gareth Southgate’s England squad, and that doesn’t look like happening at Anfield.
And reports suggest that the striker will seek a move away in January, but from a Liverpool point of view, they simply cannot let the Englishman leave in the New Year as doing so could seriously hinder their top four chances.
Ultimately, although things haven’t quite gone to plan for Sturridge in recent times, the 28-year-old always has a goal in him, and that could prove vital as the season wears on, especially if the Reds begin to struggle like they did at times in the second half of last term.
Although the Englishman has only started four games in all competitions this time round, he has still managed to net on three occasions, taking his overall Liverpool tally to 64 goals in just 131 matches for the club, in which time he has also laid on 23 assists.
Yes, the likes of Salah, Coutinho, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mane will more often than not keep Sturridge out of the team, but when it inevitably happens that Klopp needs a goal from somewhere, be it in a key Premier League or Champions League clash, who better to turn to than the 28-year-old?
None of the aforementioned quartet are out-and-out strikers and as lethal as Sturridge in the 18-yard box – for all that Klopp may want him to do as a forward in his side, nobody is good as the Englishman in front of goal.
Ultimately, if Liverpool are serious about challenging for honours in the second half of the campaign, be it going on an FA Cup run or going deep in the Champions League, Klopp will need options in every area of the pitch – the Reds fizzled out somewhat last season, and with more games already this term, that could well happen again.
And if Liverpool want to get back inside the Premier League’s top four, which once again looks to be a tough challenge, they may well need Sturridge’s goals in the second half of the campaign.
Thus, they simply cannot afford to let the £18 million-rated star (as per Transfermarkt) go in the New Year.
Liverpool fans… what do you think? Let us know!