Daniel Sturridge has had a difficult season. He's always been injury-prone, but this season he's only managed to play nine out of the approximately 65,000 (give or take a replay match) games Liverpool have competed in this season. The longest run of games he's managed to go before sustaining another injury is three. He's already reached that this time around, having made his return in the defeat against West Ham in the FA Cup, then starting in the 6-0 rout against Aston Villa, and finally playing another 70 minutes in the first leg of the Europa League round of 32 last Thursday. Still, despite that, Sturridge has managed to rack up five goals in those nine games, proving just how important he is to the team.
Steven Caulker isn't eligible to play in Liverpool's first final in four years this Sunday when they travel to London to take on Manchester City at Wembley. However, he's still excited about experiencing this event with the team. And though he hasn't had much of an opportunity to play with Sturridge since joining the team on loan in January, he's still aware of his fellow Englishman's talent. In an interview with Sky Sports, the defender praised Sturridge and looked forward to seeing him perform in the final.
"He's looking sharp and strong. He's always been a hard worker, I've known him from previous England camps and he's always got his head down and working hard, which is no different to how he is now.
"He's been battling away, and hopefully it's time for a bit of luck on his side and he can stay injury free."
"He's one of our best players, and he's proved that since he came straight back in with a goal against Aston Villa. I'm sure there's many more exciting things to come from him until the end of the season."
The last time Caulker shared the pitch with Sturridge was on the other side, still playing with Southampton. He was one of the unfortunate players who was dealt a 6-1 thumping from the Reds in the league cup quarterfinals back in December. It was a game where Sturridge bagged a brace while thoroughly impressing after seven weeks on the sidelines.
About that day, Caulker said, "I'm well aware of how good this team can be, I felt the full force of them that day and if the boys can put a performance on like that at the weekend, they have a great chance of winning."