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Rodgers, Gerrard: Sturridge "Outstanding" and "Unstoppable"

Keen to focus attention on a quality performance, both Brendan Rodgers and Steven Gerrard heaped plaudits on Daniel Sturridge's contributions to clawing back a point on Sunday.

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Michael Regan

Of the many talking points emerging from Sunday's match against Chelsea, the most tactically exciting was Daniel Sturridge's return to the form that had everyone so excited after his first three matches in a red shirt. Left on the bench to start the match, Sturridge's half time substitution had an immediate impact on Liverpool as they burst out of the gate upon the restart.

"We had one or two moments where we showed intensity [in the first half]," said Brendan Rodgers, "but I felt bringing Daniel on in the second half, playing with a narrow four in midfield and letting him move and work around Luis Suarez, would give us more of a threat. I thought Daniel was outstanding in the second half and as a team we were much more aggressive."

Steven Gerrard echoed Rodger's assessment of the club's performance, stating that although the first forty-five was "flat", Rodgers' half-time talk ignited the strong performance the team would go on to give in the second half.

"He demanded a reaction," said Stevie. "Daniel Sturridge made a hell of a difference, if he's in that type of form he's unstoppable and his performance gave the team a lift.

"We need to take the responsibility for being flat in the first half. In the second half, when [the crowd] saw that we were prepared to give them a reaction, they got right behind us. I thought we were very unlucky not to win the game."

Despite Sturridge's best efforts and the Anfield faithful willing the team on to a win, it's yet another match where Liverpool showed up for only forty-five minutes. While consistency is important and figuring out how to play two strong halves in a single game might be a top priority to figure out for next season, the resilience shown in coming from behind to draw the game level not once but twice in a match certainly speaks to something positive, even if the preference is to not go behind in the first place.

With Suarez likely out for the remainder of the season and Sturridge finding his way back to form, hopefully the latter spending a full ninety minutes on the pitch will help usher in those much longed for back-to-back quality halves.

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