In his endeavor to be relentlessly positive about the efforts of his team this season, Brendan Rodgers has used a tragically narrow range of descriptors to do so, sticking mostly to the Big O: Outstanding. Rodgers' affection for the word is somewhat of a running joke (or thorn in the side, depending on who you ask) for many fans, but after Daniel Sturridge's three goal outing at Craven Cottage yesterday, Rodgers could be excused for bringing back the most used word in his vocabulary.
"Daniel was outstanding," Rodgers said. "He scored three goals and he could have had maybe six. I think that's his 11th goal in 15 games since joining Liverpool so he has made a great start to his career. If he keeps improving, keeps training well, then I think he will have an outstanding couple of years for us.
"He's not perfect. He should have squared one when he was through. But he was looking for his hat-trick, he's a goalscorer, and to be greedy you've got to be good. He's an outstanding player."
Rodgers rarely levels any criticism at his players once he starts handing out "outstandings", Oprah-style, but Sturridge's performance was such that his manager's observations shouldn't tarnish what was a very memorable day out for the striker.
After the goal bonanza that was the match against Newcastle followed by the goal drought against Everton the week following, there remained questions as to whether or not Liverpool could continue to score goals in Luis Suarez's absence when faced with an opponent who were not deeply terrible. Fulham may not be the most convincing opponent against which to remove any shadow of a doubt as to Liverpool's goal scoring abilities, but at the very least questions about Sturridge's ability to give it the ol' Rodgers 150% against smaller clubs should be laid to rest.