Liverpool have been here before with Daniel Sturridge - a little caution needed

Daniel Sturridge

There was an expectation that he would deliver the goods for the Reds last season, but unfortunately he wasn't fit enough.

Liverpool seem to have received a massive injury boost ahead of the new season with the news that Daniel Sturridge is due to return to first-team action a month earlier than had initially been anticipated. 

Sturridge had a hip operation towards the end of last season and there were suggestions that he would not be in action again until October, but reports in the press overnight, including one in the Daily Mail, suggest that Sturridge could be back in the side for September. 

Liverpool have been here before, of course. Last season was agony for both the player and the club. After making three appearances at the start of the season, Sturridge didn't feature again until the new year after a succession of injuries, and the Reds' campaign suffered as a result. 

There were so many times in the first half of last season that Liverpool fans were counting down the days for Sturridge to return to the side, only for him to be struck down by another problem. It's unclear whether the pressure and anticipation that came with a possible return for the forward had an effect, but one doubts if it was helpful. In fact, he returned to the side on the back of a couple of promising performances, before picking up another injury towards the end of the campaign, and Liverpool's form dipped once more. 

It seems as though Brendan Rodgers has tried to address Liverpool's lack of firepower from last season and relieve the pressure on the shoulders of Sturridge with the signings of Christian Benteke and Roberto Firmino - while Danny Ings and Divock Origi should provide more effective cover than Rickie Lambert, Mario Balotelli and Fabio Borini did last term.

The main point is that Sturridge really needs to come into a side that is capable of scoring goals - that has to be shown in the opening four games of the season prior to the forward's possible return to action in September.  

Everyone has seen the striker Sturridge can be, having scored 21 goals in the Premier League in the 2013/14 season, so having him back and fit is a major boost. Both those who have arrived at the club this summer and those that have been part of the set-up for some time have to produce in the early stages to lift that burden on their teammate's shoulders. 

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