Jurgen Klopp praises attacking options, says Daniel Sturridge “feels good”

on 12.02.2016


Having endured a tumultuous period of injuries within his attacking ranks, Jurgen Klopp is relieved to now be able to call upon a number of top-level options.

Daniel Sturridge made his first appearance of 2016 in Tuesday night’s 2-1 FA Cup fourth-round replay defeat to West Ham United, and despite failing to score, he performed promisingly.

The return of Sturridge adds another high-quality player to Klopp’s attacking selection, and after a lengthy spell on the sidelines, the German is relishing the prospect of fielding Sturridge alongside the likes of Roberto Firmino and Christian Benteke.

Speaking to reporters on Friday morning, Klopp hailed the “big step” Sturridge has made in his recovery.

“He played about 70 minutes [against West Ham], so he had a normal recovery after,” he explained.

“He feels good, I heard nothing else.

“We have to think about how we can manage the minutes, but he took a big step in the last week of course”

LONDON, ENGLAND - Tuesday, February 9, 2016: Liverpool's Christian Benteke looks dejected after missing a chance against West Ham United during the FA Cup 4th Round Replay match at Upton Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Sturridge joined Benteke in a heavily attacking lineup in the second half at the Boleyn Ground, but Liverpool’s forward charge was undermined by some poor finishing from the Belgian.

Despite this, Klopp remained positive as to Benteke’s form.

“I can do a lot of things, but in the end the last and most important help comes from the player himself,” he continued.

“I saw really good signs against West Ham. Having this number of opportunities is a good sign. But it’s not too easy.

“I talked to him, a few times, gave him some advice as a human being, as a coach.


“He’s really trying to come back in an easy moment.”

Klopp hinted that Benteke would not start against his former club, Aston Villa, on Sunday, however, protesting that “it’s not because of personal histories.”

But the German remains confident that Sturridge and Benteke can perform together, citing the No. 15’s display alongside Divock Origi in December’s 6-1 win away to Southampton in the League Cup as evidence.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 6, 2016: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino in action against Sunderland during the Premier League match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

More likely to partner Sturridge up front against the Villans is the in-form Roberto Firmino, who has enjoyed a remarkable upturn in fortunes following Klopp’s arrival in October.

Since switching to a centre-forward role under Klopp, the Brazilian has scored six goals and assisted on five in 10 appearances.

Having been rested for the trip to east London on Tuesday night, Firmino is set to return at Villa Park, and Klopp acknowledged how he was “much more stable” compared to in October.

“He’s a good player, there’s no doubt about this,” he said.

“A few weeks ago we had no strikers, now we have four strikers.

“[But] it’s not about satisfying a single player. We have to find a stable formation.


“Roberto is much more stable, with much more consistency in his performances then when I came here.

“It’s good for all of us.”

Klopp is facing the prospect of fielding Firmino, Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho—Liverpool’s three finest attackers—together for the first time in his Merseyside reign.

Against a beleaguered Villa defence, this top-class trio could enjoy a bright afternoon.

KLOPP’S PRE-VILLA PRESSER

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26 COMMENTS

    • I thought I was watching A mix of Neymar and Messi in the form of Sturridge, don’t laugh at me, he looked absolutely incredible against WHU.

      • Erm, I’m not laughing at you but I had to smile, could you throw Suarez into the mix as well that’d be perfect.

  1. In theory, the Plan B option with Benteke sounds great!

    In reality, it’s just not cutting the mustard.

    Despite this, I still feel that Tekkers can pull through a tough period. It’s probably all new to him as well.

    The only thing I can’t shake off is the price paid with what we’ve actually got. Again, it’s not his fault, but he’ll forever be judged against that.

    • Yeah it hurts and we just don’t seem to do big money signings very well. I almost feel more comfortable signing Matip (if he comes) and Grujic as their low cost reminds me of a time when we could sign players like Hyypia, Henchoz and Hamann.

        • I have a feeling there aren’t many signings like that under Rodgers, as it would be difficult to do for an inexperienced manager. People would ask “who are these guys?” It’s easier when you’re Klopp with his record of picking up cheap players and turning them into world class players.

        • Matip remains an if, and it wouldn’t surprise me if that continued. He’ll be trying to get a CL club I reckon although most of them are quite well set.

    • I wish I felt the same. He’ll move on as did Carroll, as did Lambert. We simply haven’t got the inventory to supplement a player like that. Like a lot of fans I questioned his signing in the first place. It’s a shame

  2. Origi up top to chase down the defenders and pick up anything in the air. Coutinho left, Firminho middle & Sturridge right. An attacking front 4 at last.

  3. divock will be like ibe, much masterrbat withoutejacula. i saw,him play for lille, he not a striker,so take it out of yr head that he will score

  4. Klopps honesty is so refreshing, he says it as he sees it no bs no rhetoric just an honest answer to questions and don’t the supporters just love that. It’s what you get on the streets of Liverpool and it’s so refreshing to hear it from the manager.YNWA

  5. There were some big positives despite the loss to WHU. Coutinho back, Studge lookiing dangerous ever time he had the ball. With Studge, Firmino, and Coutinho in our attack, we can really challenge for a cup.

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