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Sturridge set for Liverpool return

17 October 2014, 22:57

London - Daniel Sturridge could feature in Liverpool's Premier League trip to bottom club Queens Park Rangers this weekend, manager Brendan Rodgers said on Friday.

The England striker has been unavailable since early September with a thigh injury picked up on internationl duty, but is close to making a return to the side.

"We'll have to see where he is at tomorrow and go from there," Rodgers, whose side play on Sunday, told reporters.

"He's been out a long time, nearly six weeks. I must give credit to our medical team."

"Daniel has made us a real threat and when you take him out of the team the model of your game is different," Rodgers, who has been relying on misfiring new signing Mario Balotelli to lead the attack, added.

"But when he is playing he is one of the top European strikers. It's important for him to be playing games."

With midfielders Joe Allen and Emre Can also available again after injuries, Liverpool will be hoping to kickstart their season after a stuttering start to the campaign.

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"I'm quite relaxed on it all and we will look at it after 10 games to see how we're set," Rodgers, whose side sit ninth, said. "At this point in time, we are looking to improve our performance level and we know we will get better.

"There's no crisis - we lost a world class player and brought a number in.

"The players here are magnificent and the attitude and effort they show gives me the hope we can push on."

Inevitably, Rodgers was asked about the so-called 'club versus country row' involving Raheem Sterling that has rumbled on ever since England manager Roy Hodgson revealed that Sterling did not face Estonia last week because he was tired.

"Roy and I have exchanged messages, we want to put this to bed and move on, and concentrate on looking after a huge talent," Rodgers said.

"I read people talking about club v country. I take great pride in players playing for their country. We have many internationals. It's been grossly unfair how Raheem has been criticised for something he did not say. He's back here in a secure environment.

"He's a wonderful talent, he's a kid we've brought up to be honest and responsible. All he said was that he was tired."

- Reuters


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