Are Liverpool putting too much pressure, and becoming over reliant on Daniel Sturridge?

There seems to have been an element of Daniel Sturridge's return will mean that Liverpool's season will transform - with that comes a huge degree of pressure.

Liverpool fans will have had some welcome news yesterday over the fact that striker Daniel Sturridge came through his first full training session in the start of September - where he picked up a thigh injury on international duty.

Sturridge hasn't played for Liverpool since the start of August and the Reds have sorely missed the striker - who scored 24 goals for the team in all competitions last season. 

But there seems to be a huge degree of pressure on the 25-year-old as the Reds look to turn around a poor start to the season which has seen them sit in 11th place after 11 games, with their hopes of qualifying from their Champions League group in the balance - though on the positive side they have managed to scrape through to the quarter-finals of the League Cup.

Prior to Sturridge's injury, the Reds managed to take six points from their opening three league games - and given the start was against Southampton, Manchester City and Tottenham, one would say that was a respectable start to the campaign.

But given the Reds have only won the two league games since and have lacked cutting edge in the final third, it would seem Sturridge has been a big miss. 

When he does return to the side - with the trip to Selhurst Park to take on Crystal Palace on November 23 in the Premier League anticipated to be his return - it is going to be a pretty hectic schedule of two games per week from the word go.

There is a run of winnable Premier League games as well as two huge Champions League games, which you would think Liverpool would have to win both.

But there seems to be this feeling that as soon as Sturridge returns, it will be all ok. Liverpool will counter-attack with the same vigour as last term, Mario Balotelli will start to find his scoring touch in the Premier League and the service will be there for the forwards to thrive off.

There might be improvement, but it may also take time for the Reds to get going, and no-one should expect that as soon as Sturridge finds the net for only the second time this season that all will be well with the Reds.

There is going to be the question of how Sturridge is going to slot into the starting line-up, who drops out, and does Rodgers go with a diamond that worked so well last season which exposes a fragile defence, or a 4-3-3/4-2-3-1 which has looked less than convincing this season.

For all we know, the latter of the two systems may be tailor made to Sturridge's needs, and can accommodate Balotelli given his willingness to drop into the wider positions when the oppositions' defence pushes higher up the field.

Finally, there is the chance that Sturridge could suffer another injury this season, but whilst he's back playing, the Reds will be hoping to build up some momentum and confidence that will make them hard to stop even if he were sit out more games this term.

Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher told TalkSport: “You can’t just expect Daniel Sturridge to come in and fire on all cylinders. He has been out for while so you don’t want to put too much pressure on him, but it looks like it is down to him because there is not much else there at the moment."

Liverpool fans will be hoping it is a pressure that is embraced by Sturridge, and he can hit the ground running during a crucial period in their season.

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