Liverpool latest: Suarez better for ban, strike partner reveals secrets

A round up of the key news stories about Liverpool from the past 24 hours.

Liverpool midfielder Lucas says hanging onto Luis Suarez was vital for the team’s chances of success this season. Suarez could easily have left Anfield last summer but was convinced to stay as Liverpool enjoy the benefits of having him in their side.

“What he did last year for us and what he is doing already just shows that is why the club wanted to keep him. Liverpool want to keep their best players and he was the best player last year - and probably the Premier League's best player,” Lucas told FourFourTwo.

Brendan Rodgers says Suarez is better off at Liverpool than had he made the decision to move away. Rodgers believes Suarez’ career is better off for having stayed at Liverpool past last summer.

“He is better off here because we are growing. He can grow as well and he has the support of everyone here. Even if we were mid-table, I would maintain this was the place for him to be,” said the Liverpool boss.

Rodgers has also gone on to reiterate that Suarez will not be sold in any way, shape or form this January. Some ridiculous reports have suggested Suarez could be vulnerable to a bid from Real Madrid this winter.

LIVE Premier League match alerts to your phone - goals, red cards, half and full time scores

Liverpool forward Daniel Sturridge says he appreciates the advice Dr Steve Peters has been giving him. Peters is a sports psychiatrist and Sturridge has credited him as a main reason for his form this season.

“Steve has helped a lot in terms of mindset. He’s all about self-belief: don’t go out there with the mentality of trying to do something, just let it happen,” said Sturridge.

Sturridge has also attributed some of his form to former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba, who told Sturridge to believe in himself and his ability before the start of this season.

Suarez and Sturridge have been strongly praised by former Reds midfielder Jamie Redknapp, who suggests they are a better combination than Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie at Manchester United.

See also: Suarez, Torres and...? Five Premier League heroes from the weekend

Liverpool right-back Andre Wisdom was voted Derby County’s man of the match on his debut for the Championship club over the weekend. Wisdom recently moved to Derby where he’ll spend the rest of the season on loan.

In transfer news, Liverpool are set to go head-to-head with Arsenal to sign Eintracht Frankfurt star Sebastian Rode. Bayern Munich recently withdrew their interest in the 23-year-old and the Daily Star has suggested Brendan Rodgers’ side will go up against the Gunners in an £18 million battle to sign him.

In a more familiar transfer rumour, fresh reports in the Italian press have reiterated Rafa Benitez’ apparent desire to sign Martin Skrtel. Skrtel has been linked with a move to Napoli for some time in one of the longest running rumours connected to any star in the current first team squad at Anfield.

See also: A goal every other game - Hungarian former Liverpool starlet finally coming good

image: © kuaver

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch