The takes on Daniel Sturridge are plentiful and sundry — well, as sundry as punter takes ever get — but one thing is absolutely beyond debate; when he has been on the pitch for Liverpool, he has been absolutely lethal. A goal every 133 minutes, and a goal or assist every 97, over the course of five years is a stunning return, and the kind of stuff fans dream of when an attacker is signed.
Unfortunately, Sturridge’s incessant health troubles have prevented him from taking the pitch for more than 8500 minutes in those five years, or an average of 19 90-minute matches. If that makes it sound like the 28-year old has missed a lot of games, it’s because he has. Since the Reds’ close brush with the title in 2013/14, Sturridge has been unavailable for an average of 20 games due to injury every season. On top of that, time spent finding match fitness and an ever diminishing athleticism adds to up a situation that is unsatisfactory for both parties.
It’s no wonder, then, that the Merseysiders are willing to part ways with the former Chelsea man. What seems a bigger challenge is finding a club willing to take a punt on the injury-prone striker, especially the sort of £30m punt Liverpool are reportedly looking for. Sturridge’s £120k per week wages are another stumbling block, supposedly scuppering a potential move to Newcastle a week ago.
Since then, the England international and his camp have purportedly reached out to Serie A’s Inter Milan(!), and according to the Liverpool Echo, the Italians have now reached back. As per every deal with an Italian club ever, Inter claim to possess insufficient funds for a permanent deal, but would be willing to pay a loan fee, as well as cover the totality of Sturridge’s wages for the duration of the loan.
Whether Liverpool will agree to a temporary deal is up in the air, but with Sturridge once again sidelined, and yet to prove he can fit into the frontline of Klopp’s rampant Reds, the stage appears set for an exit for one of the club’s most upsetting what-could-have-beens.