Wednesday Jan 2  Posted by: Ben Carr  8 Comments »

Our New Number 15 – Daniel Sturridge

Our new man, signed for a rumoured fee of 12 million pounds from Chelsea. He’s joined with mixed opinion from fans, is that any different from any other signing? I remember a few people saying that they thought Luis Suarez wouldn’t cut it in the Premier League, ‘Just another Kezman’ they said. How wrong they were. I think it’s important that fans realised as of right now, this January we simply aren’t in the market for those players you could consider ‘the finished article’. Not full stop, not even this summer, but as of right now, we’re just not in the market for that type of player. We’re a side that needs to grow and improve, add quality along the way and culminate into a system that suits the managers ethics and way of thinking. So onto the player in question. 23 year old Daniel Sturridge, I’m not entirely sure why people don’t want him, is it the cost, the fact he’s greedy, not good enough, a former Chelsea player? Or is it just a mix of all four? The one I hear as justification the most is that he’s too greedy, when did being greedy become such a terrible thing, when I think of the best players in world football, Messi, Ronaldo, Neymar, Zlatan, even our own Luis Suarez, they’re not known for their expansive passing play, they’re known for getting the ball, beating a man with supreme skill and firing a shot at goal. Sturridge does that. He’s explosive.

Greed and being selfish can also often by described as simply backing yourself when the time comes, no professional footballer has got to where they want to be without thinking they’re pretty good. Sturridge has gone from Moneybags City, to Moneybags Chelsea and could have sat on their benches while earning a decent wage, but he’s not content with picking up a salary for performing well in training, he wants to be at the forefront of it, making the crowd roar, fulfilling his own ambition, and the fact he thinks that Liverpool match that ambition, that’s exciting. We spent a huge amount of money on young talent in the not so distant past, 12 million for someone that’s a future England international and was picked to lead the line for the Great Britain squad during the Olympics isn’t that bad. Of course you can look at other players around the world and see ‘better value’ but that’s on the assumption that they’d be valuable within a Liverpool team. I’ll use Swansea’s Michu as an example. £2 million he was bought for, and excellent piece of business by Michael Laudrup, but do you think Michu would have been as successful in an Arsenal team, or a Manchester City, or even a Newcastle? No, he wouldn’t Swansea have built their forward play around him, and he’s profiting from that, much like Andy Carroll at Newcastle before we went mental. The value of a player isn’t what they’re worth at buying point, it’s what you can get out of them for the money you paid.

Sturridge’s longest run in Chelsea’s Premier League side is 6 games, 6 games. When he played for Bolton on loan scoring 8 in 12, he had a run of 11 games, scoring 7 goals in the process. (Incase you’re confused, he didn’t start on his debut but did score a last minute winner after coming on as a substitute). Every goalscorer needs games, he needs the trust and support of his team mates and a run in the team. A good example of this is an ex player of ours but shows the pattern perfectly. Fernando Torres. I’ll leave that there. Believe me I love a good stat, I think they add to everything you read, but as a fan, all I want to see is the ball go in the net. I don’t care if it’s taken him 6 attempts in a game or if his shots on target percentage is lower than that of a Spurs player of a similar build and price. I want him to score, and when part of a team that made him feel wanted, needed even, Sturridge did that. I won’t say he’ll be an instant success, but what I will say that is if he gets a run in the side, a sustained run, he’ll score goals as well as create them.

If you do like a stat then try this one out, it’s very basic and may not even prove anything but Sturridge was equal with Frank Lampard last year as Chelsea top goal scorer in the league (11), a squad that included Mata, Drogba, Torres, Malouda, Kalou, Lukaka. He scored as many goals in the league as Drogba and Torres did, COMBINED. Of course that may say more about how poor those 2 were, but it comes back to the fact that neither of them had a run of games. Sturridge also had 5 Premier League assists to his name, only 2 Liverpool players managed more in the league, Charlie Adam (11) and Luis Suarez (6). I think we’ve got a good player on our hands, attacking, presses well, works hard, loves a shot from anywhere, backs himself.

Welcome to the club Daniel, good luck and for as long as you commit to the club and try your hardest. You’ll Never Walk Alone.

So what do you think? Is he what you wanted or is he an unproven over-rated British player? Let me know in the comments section. As always if you’d like to talk about this more directly, or just follow me! My twitter is @DoctorBenjy

YNWA

Ben Carr