Ex-Reds defender names the Liverpool star who was “on another level”.

Dave Tindall

Former Liverpool defender Conor Masterson says Daniel Sturridge was the standout star during his time at Anfield.

Masterson spent five years at Liverpool from 2014-2019. The Irishman is now at QPR.

He had just one season with the senior team but that included a huge moment. He was named on the subs bench for the Champions League quarter-final with Manchester City in 2018.

Prior to that he’d captained the Reds U18 team. And that earned him an invite from then coach Brendan Rodgers to train with the senior side.

The centre-back mixed with some huge names. But he says one star stood out a mile – even though the player was considered something of an enigma.

Masterson told Goal: “Daniel Sturridge, man! He was just a joke. He ripped everyone apart.

“[Philippe] Coutinho was good, but Sturridge was on another level.

“He was so sharp, he had pace, he could finish, he had skill, he could do everything.  He stood out a mile to me.”

Sturridge played for the Reds from 2013-2019. But the stats reveal his big problem. The England striker managed just 116 league games in that time due to a string of injuries.

He scored 50 league goals but left Liverpool fans wondering what might have been if available more regularly.

Masterson praise for Alexander-Arnold

Masterson played in the same Liverpool youth team as Ben Woodburn and Ovie Ejaria. But one current star left the biggest impression.

That was Trent Alexander-Arnold although Masterson says he remembers him slightly differently.

“Trent was a hot-head back then!” claimed the defender.

“But what a player. He played in midfield, but when we went up to the Under-18s the coaches decided that his best pathway was going to be at right-back.

“Good decision, eh?”

Alexander-Arnold has been a key figure in Liverpool’s capture of the Premier League and Champions League in the last two seasons.

However, he was taken off during the recent 1-1 draw against Manchester City. He’s expected to face around a month on the sidelines.

That means the Reds right-backi could miss Liverpool’s remaining Champions League group stage matches.  He’s also set to sit out the Premier League games against Leicester, Brighton and Wolves.