Liverpool legend: I always knew Sturridge would become a special player

Legendary Liverpool and England striker Robbie Fowler has revealed he always rated Reds frontman Daniel Sturridge as a ‘special player’.

The current Liverpool and England star has scored a sensational 21 goals in all competitions for Liverpool this term as one half of the duo dubbed the ‘SAS’ with the Premier League’s current top scorer Luis Suarez.

The 24-year-old scored for England last week in the Three Lions’ 1-0 win over Denmark at Wembley ahead of the World Cup this summer which, provided he remains fit, the forward must surely be on flight to lead the line for Roy Hodgson’s England at the tournament.

In the meantime, the former Chelsea and Manchester City youngster is proving himself a special force in the Premier League with a massive improvement in form, confidence and ability under Reds boss Brendan Rodgers.

38-year-old Fowler spent 17 years of his career at Anfield and remains a Kop legend – he scored 120 goals for Liverpool across 236 appearances before moving on to join Leeds in 2001 and then Manchester City in 2003 before returning to Anfield.

The Toxteth-born local hero also notched up 26 caps for his country and 7 goals at international level with England appearing for England at the European Championships in 1996 and again in Euro 2000. The England and Kop legend reminisced about his time at Manchester City where he first encountered a young Daniel Sturridge.

“I was lucky enough to train with Daniel when I was at Man City,” Fowler told the Liverpool Echo.

“You could see even at 15 that he had everything. He used to embarrass some of the older players in the squad with his skill.”

“He was so confident. I always knew he would go on to become a special player,” he added.

Fowler spent three years at Manchester City alongside the likes of another Reds and England legend David James, Steven McManaman as well as Sylvain Distin, Danny Mills, Joey Barton, and Shaun Wright-Phillips, before the takeover and investment at the Etihad since the arrival of Sheikh Mansour in 2008.

Daniel Sturridge began his development at Aston Villa as a seven-year-old boy before a three-year spell with Coventry City between age 11 and 14 when he signed as a promising teenage prospect in 2003.

City used him on just 21 occasions over his three years at the club and so Sturridge move to Stamford Bridge in 2009 where he make his break-through into the first team, predominantly as a winger, for Chelsea where he won medals for the Premier League, Champions League and two FA Cups.

However, his move to Anfield in 2012 has certainly helped him fulfil his potential and, under the inspiration and instruction of Brendan Rodgers, he has shown the ‘special’ qualities Fowler suggests he knew he had all along – all the striker needed, it seems, was a little faith from a coach willing to invest trust and patience in his ability which he is now repaying in abundance for Liverpool Football Club.

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