All it took was a little time away. At least that’s how it seems today, as after struggling to accept the more limited role his injuries had forced him into last season and heading out on loan to West Bromwich Albion, Daniel Sturridge isn’t going anywhere.
Not this summer, and not this season. He’s spoken about his love for the people at the club, for his teammates, and about feeling as though he’s come “home” after six months away. And it seems Jürgen Klopp, for his part, is happy to have him around.
As a result, according to James Pearce of The Liverpool Echo, the club and player have decided a sale will not be considered this summer. That Sturridge, despite being in the final year of his £120k per week contract, will remain at the club.
This news represents a significant change, as just a month ago Sturridge was on his way out of the club, with Liverpool only waiting for someone—most likely Besiktas or Sevilla—to show a willingness to match the 28-year-old’s £15M valuation.
Given Sturridge’s re-embrace of the club following his return from West Brom as well as his impressive pre-season displays, it is perhaps fortuitous those clubs baulked at paying such a fee for a player who remains talented but has a highly worrying injury record.
Now that he is staying, it’s really only that injury record that causes doubt. Sturridge, it appears, really does love the club and his teammates—and spending time at West Brom only reinforced that for him—and if he can stay fit, he can make a difference.
We know he’s still talented. And we know now that he would rather embrace a more limited role at Anfield then head down the table or to another league in search of more minutes. What we don’t know is whether his body will allow him to perform.