For the third time this season, Daniel Sturridge is nearing what Liverpool fans are hoping is a return to action. After a successful rehab stint in the United States, the striker is expected back in Liverpool before the weekend and, if things go well, he will then begin individual training with an eye towards returning to action over the next few weeks.
"He's into the final stages of his rehab," said Brendan Rodgers at his pre-match press conference today. "We're looking forward to having him back. The work that he's done in America has been fantastic. He has been very well supported over there. He has travelled about to get some of the best people in the world, specialising in his rehabilitation, and now he’ll now come back and finish his rehabilitation here."
While there’s no way that Sturridge will be ready to go for this weekend or next, there is some hope that he might be able to take part in either the club’s fourth round FA Cup tie against Bolton on the 24th or the second leg of the League Cup semi-final against Chelsea on the 27th. More important than getting him back as soon as possible, though, is making sure the striker is fully fit when he does return.
"We're hoping that at some point in January he'll be back into the team and can help us to achieve something in the second half," added the manager. "We're trying to look after the medium to long-term here, so he won't be rushed. We've been monitoring his situation and things look really good. Hopefully, coming back at this late stage, he won't be too far away, but we'll assess that when he does get back."