Posts Tagged ‘Daniel Sturridge’
Despite Wales sitting perilously deep at times, England toiled in their attempts to pull them out of their defensive shape and it was not until added time that the decisive moment of quality arrived. Sturridge knocked the ball forward to Vardy, who laid it off to Alli, and though the Tottenham Hotspur midfielder could not profit from his own slick turn, Sturridge burst in to beat Hennessey at his near post. It prompted an explosion of joy on the England bench, Hodgson leaping to his feet and assistant coach Gary Neville haring down the touchline. But throwing all the strikers on and hoping for the best is not an approach that can be relied upon to carry England deep into the tournament.
For all the joy of England’s dramatic victory over Wales, they remain very much a work in progress. My piece for AFP can be read here.
After becoming frustrated about his lack of progress at first City and then Chelsea, Sturridge did not begin to consistently showcase the staggering ability first glimpsed during his teenage years until he joined Liverpool in January 2013. An intelligent, technically accomplished and elusive striker, he scored 11 times in his first 16 games and contributed 21 goals to a mesmerising 52-goal partnership with Luis Suárez as Liverpool came agonisingly close to Premier League glory in 2013-14. Fondly admired by England manager Roy Hodgson, he went to the 2014 World Cup with the number nine shirt on his back and scored in their opening game against Italy. But since then a litany of niggling injuries has restricted him to 28 appearances from a possible 101 for Liverpool and kept him away from the international scene for over 18 months.
A piece for AFP on Liverpool’s Daniel Sturridge, who will be seeking to make up for lost time in Sunday’s Capital One Cup final.
“With Luis Suárez having left for Barcelona and injuries restricting Daniel Sturridge to only seven starts, Liverpool have struggled for goals badly, averaging 1.38 per game compared to 2.66 in 2013-14. Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert, brought in to soften the blow of Suárez’s departure, have failed, and Liverpool’s four recognised strikers (Sturridge, Balotelli, Lambert and Fabio Borini) have mustered only eight league goals between them. Promising Belgian striker Divock Origi is due to arrive during the summer, having been loaned back to Lille after being signed last July, but Liverpool also need to find a proven goal-scorer (or goal-scorers) if they are to recapture the heights of last season. “You can’t hide the fact we’ve lost over 50 goals,” Rodgers said after Tuesday’s defeat at Hull. “We have to look to improve the squad. It’s always great if you can get marquee players to come in and help you. The owners will support that.””
I’ve written a piece on the five issues Brendan Rodgers needs to address in order to get Liverpool back on track and you can read it here.
“Manchester City and Chelsea, England’s nouveaux riches, appear poised to dominate the Premier League in 2015, with traditional powerhouses Manchester United and Liverpool working their way through periods of transition. United began this year as champions and Liverpool came agonisingly close to succeeding them, but it was City who prevailed in the 2013-14 title race and it is Chelsea who approach the New Year in pole position.”
My AFP review of the year 2014 in the Premier League can be read here.
“Manaus (Brazil) (AFP) – Mario Balotelli’s second-half header earned Italy a 2-1 victory over an enterprising England side in an engaging World Cup Group D opener in Manaus on Saturday.”
My first World Cup match report for AFP on a captivating encounter at the Amazonia Arena can be read here.
“London (AFP) – Liverpool’s Premier League title bid was left in ruins after Crystal Palace mounted a sensational comeback from 3-0 down to draw 3-3 at Selhurst Park on Monday.”
My AFP match report on an extraordinary night at Selhurst Park can be found here.
Reaction: Rodgers proud despite Liverpool collapse
“LONDON — Manchester United manager David Moyes picked up where Alex Ferguson left off on Saturday as the Premier League champions began their title defence by winning 4-1 at Swansea City.”
My AFP report on the opening day of the 2013-14 Premier League season can be read here.
“LONDON — Chelsea claimed partial revenge for their stormy loss to Manchester United at the weekend by prevailing 5-4 when the teams resumed hostilities in an end-to-end fourth-round League Cup tie on Wednesday.”
My round-up of Wednesday’s Capital One Cup fourth-round matches, including an extraordinary encounter at Stamford Bridge, can be read here.