Liverpool supporters have been in high spirits in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their side get back to winning ways in the Premier League courtesy of a 2-0 success over struggling Southampton on Sunday.
Jurgen Klopp’s men went into their clash with the relegation-threatened Saints off the back of drawing 2-2 with fellow top four chasers Tottenham in their preceding league outing, which was of particular disappointment given they led Mauricio Pochettino’s side heading into the final few minutes. Yet they put that frustration behind them on Sunday as goals from Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah sealed a routine victory for the Merseyside giants on the South Coast, moving them to within two points of second place Manchester United.
Thus, there have been many delighted Liverpudlians in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom are hoping their team can take their momentum into their clash with Porto in the first leg of their last 16 Champions League encounter on Wednesday.
In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident Reds fans to get their teeth into, not least Monday evening’s 3-0 win for Chelsea over struggling West Brom at Stamford Bridge, a result which leaves Antonio Conte’s Blues just a point behind Liverpool in the Premier League table.
But it was the injury sustained by Daniel Sturridge in the third minute of the game which has got several Reds supporters talking in the Tavern, with many feeling that the over-reliance on the 28-year-old could well cost him a place in England’s World Cup squad.
Ultimately, the striker left Anfield during the January window in a bid for more regular first team football, with his exclusion from Gareth Southgate’s most recent England squad back in November the clearest indication that things needed to change.
And change they did as he secured a loan move to Alan Pardew’s West Brom for the remainder of the season, but already things have followed an all too familiar pattern, with Sturridge injured and now facing a spell out of the side.
And being the main focal point of the side, ultimately the one the Baggies are pinning their hopes on to avoid the drop this season, could actually come back to haunt Sturridge, as he won’t necessarily be able to get the rest and recovery needed to produce his best form.
If the 28-year-old was able to be rotated, he may well have been able to perform well enough in patches for the Baggies, yet he is likely to find himself in a hugely unfamiliar position of being expected to start every week – to put that difficulty into context, the 28-year-old has not started three successive league games since April 2016, and five since 2014.
Clearly, everybody knows how lethal Sturridge is in front of goal when he’s fit, but going straight into a side desperate for his goals with very few games left of the season, and asking him to do something he hasn’t done for a while in playing regularly, may well do more harm than good.
Ultimately, it may well cost him a place in Southgate’s 23-man England squad.
Liverpool fans… what do you think? Let us know!