Brendan Rodgers says he 'needs to rest' Liverpool star Raheem Sterling

Liverpool have struggled to achieve the heavy heights of last season.

Liverpool put in yet another flat and deflating performance at Anfield today, as Brendan Rodgers' side drew 0-0 with Sunderland.

The team failed to get a proper grip on a sluggish game and the fans were once again left wondering where the team that pushed Manchester City all the way last term had gone.

Of course there are mitigating circumstances. Luis Suarez left and Daniel Sturridge has been injured while the new signings have failed to look anything like the part.

One player who has struggled to meet his levels from last season has been Raheem Sterling. The forward was exceptional last term. A real live-wire with pace and skill to burn he started the season in good form but has tailed off now and again, generally struggling with his consistency.

He is still young and now Brendan Rodgers has been admitting that perhaps he has played too much football - a rest is therefore inevitable.

Rodgers told the Liverpool FC website, before the game today:

"There will be a period where I need to do that [rest him] and that was always in the plan.

"Of course there is the short term, but you have got to think in the longer term.

"He's a kid coming off the back end of a long season where he played a lot of games, and then went on travelling to a World Cup.

"I think for a lot of the players that were away it takes a bit of time to get going again."

Liverpool need Sterling to find his best rhythm soon, or indeed this season may slip away from them.

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