Dietmar Hamann on selection issues facing Liverpool ahead of Manchester United clash

Anfield Kop

Hamann was speaking on Sky Sports News, and thinks that Daniel Sturridge could miss out on the starting XI, and considered a possible role for Steven Gerrard.

Former Liverpool midfielder Dietmar Hamann has suggested that Liverpool could start with striker Daniel Sturridge on the bench, with Raheem Sterling taking the place as the central striker when they take on Manchester United at Anfield on Sunday.

It's not something that Brendan Rodgers hasn't done before with Sturridge coming off the bench in wins over Southampton and Manchester City recently.

Liverpool currently have a balancing act to perform with Sturridge as they try to get their forward back to full fitness, but also pick the side that is most effective to win the bigger games. 

Speaking on Sky Sports News, Hamann suggested this could be an area of the team that manager Brendan Rodgers will look at ahead of the visit of Louis van Gaal's side.

He was asked about whether Steven Gerrard should start the game against United having come off the bench in the second half of Monday night's win over Swansea City.

The German said: "The bigger question for me would be whether to start with Daniel Sturridge because he doesn't seem to be 100%.

"When they first went on that fantastic run they played with Raheem Sterling up top and maybe it would make a little more sense to maybe to bring Stevie in and have a bit more stability in the midfield, bring [Lazar] Markovic in and play Raheem Sterling up top.

"I think at the moment Daniel Sturridge may be best used off the bench because he doesn't seem 100% to me. There's a couple of decisions to make but the manager will watch the team very closely this week and I'm sure he'll make the right decision come Sunday"

The game is of huge significance given that if Liverpool were to beat Manchester United it would put them in the driving seat to finish in the top four places in the Premier League, with the opportunity of qualifying for next season's Champions League.

What appears to be suggested from Hamann is that Markovic could play in the wing-back role to allow Sterling to move into a more central position. It's hard to see Rodgers leaving out either of Joe Allen or Jordan Henderson to accommodate Gerrard, so it could mean Adam Lallana may miss out with the Reds' skipper playing in a more advanced role.

Sturridge's issue is also something that was discussed on Monday Night Football on Sky after Liverpool's win over Swansea City, so it looks as though it's going to be one part of the side's selection that will be watched closely ahead of the game. 

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