Star striker is determined to enjoy success with both club and country…
Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge has dismissed suggestions that England manager Roy Hodgson was the cause of his five-month injury lay-off, which kept him out for almost the entirety of the first-half of the season.
Sturridge didn’t play a game for us between the last day of August and his return on the final day of January, after picking up an injury on international duty, and then suffering a couple of further set-backs.
The 25-year-old, who struggled with both his thigh and his calf, is set to return to international duty at the end of the month, when Hodgson names his squad for the Euro qualifier against Lithuania and the friendly with Italy.
Brendan Rodgers reacted angrily to losing Sturridge, claiming that Hodgson should have been more careful with his player’s well-being, having already warned him that the forward was due a rest.
However Sturridge, who was quoted by the Daily Mail, believes there is no need to apportion blame. He said: “Regardless of what happened in the past, I love playing for England.
“That situation occurred and it’s in the past. I don’t want to dwell on it. People pick injuries up and they are unfortunate. It just so happened I got injured that day. It’s life. People get injured sometimes. It is what it is.
“My relationship with the England manager is top class. No worries at all. We speak via text. We speak to each other. We keep in touch. Throughout my injury, he kept in touch. I would never blame him for this. Never.
“Or any of the staff – it was just an unfortunate incident. I have got so much respect and admiration for him and his set-up. The relationship is very, very good.
“For me, yes, two days’ recovery works best but I am not every player. Every player’s different. Some like to train on the second day. Some don’t. I am used to having second-day recoveries now and when you get used to doing something, you do it.
“I have had periods with other clubs when I have not had second-day recovery times. So it doesn’t make a huge difference. Whatever environment you are in, you go with it. I don’t point fingers at anybody.
“Whatever the boss wants me to do with England, I’ll do it because he’s the boss. Football is about being a team player and whatever the boys are doing, you have got to go with that. I don’t blame anybody.”
Sturridge also claimed that he wasn’t interested in the form of fellow England striker Harry Kane, who has scored 26 goals in all competitions for Tottenham Hotspur so far this season, despite the 21-year-old being a major rival for his Three Lions starting spot.
He added: “Why am I watching someone else’s glories and achievements? It doesn’t matter to me who comes around or what players are about. It means nothing to me.
“When you watch other people, you don’t get anywhere in life because you are at war with yourself. Well done to Harry Kane and what he has achieved but I am not watching what he is doing. I just believe in me.”