Club and country team mate Adam Lallana has praised Daniel Sturridge‘s second-half showing for England against Wales, after his injury-time winner for the Three Lions.
Lallana was one of England’s better performers before Sturridge’s introduction alongside Jamie Vardy at half-time in Lens, and he’s becoming a key player for England now after showing huge improvements for his club under Jurgen Klopp‘s management.
But Lallana, never one to shy away from an interview, saw Sturridge in the spotlight after the match on Thursday.
“He’s got so much talent, he had a couple of sighters that went over and sometimes you think we could be a bit more patient and play the extra pass,” Lallana told Goal.
“But he doesn’t need too many chances and he showed what a vital player he is for us. He’s always involved in the game, he arrives at the big moments.
“It’s difficult for anyone when he’s faced a lot of injuries but that was one of the fittest I’ve seen him. He’s looking very dangerous.”
Sturridge is said to be looking very sharp in training, and you’d think he has to start now for England in their final group game against Slovakia on Monday night.
The Liverpool No.15 finished last season as the Reds’ top goalscorer in all competitions, with his final goal being the superb outside-of-the-boot effort against Sevilla in the Europa League final.
Sturridge came to the rescue for Roy Hodgson on the international stage, and Lallana says credit should go to the boss for the positive subs he made.
“Credit to the manager making two subs who both had an impact. It shows how good the 23 is here. You’ve also got the likes of [Jack] Wilshere, [Jordan] Henderson, [James] Milner on the bench here – different midfielders for a different circumstance. Two other full-backs, as well.
“It shows how strong the squad is. Studge and Vardy come on at half-time and the opposition thinks ‘Oh, no’.
“I had no doubt that we were going to show guts,” he added.
“The manager didn’t let us feel down at half-time, he just said to keep playing, play quicker, better, and the goals will come.”
Hodgson himself said: “He’s a special player, there’s no doubt about that.
“Since he’s got back from that injury situation, he did have a very settled period of play when he played on a regular basis and he just picked up that injury in the Europa League final.
“But I’m pleased for him because he had that injury, there was speculation, and questions if he was the right player to be in the 23, should he go and I’m delighted that I showed confidence in him because he’s not let me down very often.”
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