Rodgers: Sturridge-Benteke link can lift Liverpool

Date published: Friday 18th September 2015 2:41

Daniel Sturridge: Liverpool striker had been linked with West Ham

Brendan Rodgers says he soon hopes to pair Daniel Sturridge with Christian Benteke – and thinks Liverpool will soon turn their season around.

The Liverpool striker has returned to full training following hip surgery and could be included on the bench for Sunday’s clash with Norwich.

The 25-year-old returned to Merseyside last month after three months spent working with the medical and sports science staff at the Boston Red Sox and the England man has now returned to full contact training at Melwood.

Rodgers, addressing the media ahead of Sunday’s clash at Anfield, said of Sturridge: “On his day, he’s one of the best. He can stretch teams with his pace, and has wonderful variety in finishing.

“It’s an exciting dynamic to have both [Christian] Benteke and Sturridge. We’ve been waiting on that. When I play with a striker off the side, he’s not an out and out winger. We know we need to create and score more.”

Jordan Henderson

Rodgers also hopes Henderson can return against the Canaries. The midfielder has missed Liverpool’s last four matches with a heel injury, but has himself also resumed training following a visit to a consultant in America.

“He’ll be assessed over the next 48 hours,” Rodgers added. “We will see how it has gone. We try to give the players the best possible opportunity to be fit.”

Rodgers expects the returning players to will “add to the squad and see us go on a run of games and victories”, although the Reds boss is refusing to panic by their run of just four goals in six games so far this season: “It’s about staying calm, reinforcing how we get into positions for goals. We will get there.”

“We know it can be better, and the players are aware of that. It only takes that one performance to spin the season round again. We know it can be better, and the players are aware of that. I’m reasonably calm that our progress will come.”

Rodgers on Norwich

Nonetheless, Rodgers expects Norwich to provide stiff opposition on Sunday and said: “They’ll be very difficult. Alex [Neil] has done great. It’s up to us to impose our game, our intensity, and take some risks.”

Rodgers named a much-changed side against Bordeaux in Thursday’s Europa League clash and said he was “very encouraged” with the performances of his young players. “They coped very well. Now we can hopefully build on that.”

Rodgers has been delighted by the performance of Mamadou Sakho in France and said of the defender: “He’s working hard, he’s been immaculate in training, and is in peak fitness. His performance was brilliant.”

Rodgers added: “People don’t mention Joe Allen, but players like him are very important as they make us play. Jon Flanagan too.”

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