Former Premier League defender Daniel Gabbidon has claimed on Twitter that Daniel Sturridge decided to joins West Bromwich Albion instead of Newcastle United due to the Rafa Benitez's "negative attacking play".
The 28-year-old has finally decided to leave Anfield on loan with Alan Pardew's Baggies winning the race to land the England international ahead of Newcastle, who are desperate to sign a striker this month.
Sturridge has been frustrated on Merseyside this season, playing second fiddle to Roberto Firmino while the presence of Dom Solanke and Danny Ings has also reduced his game time in the red of Liverpool.
Newcastle were strong contenders to land the former Chelsea and Man City star but Gabbidon, who co-hosts BBC Sport's "Feast of Football" believes that Sturridge overlooked the Toon because of Benitez's style of play.
You have to think that Newcastle’s negative attacking play in recent weeks has cost them with regards to getting Sturridge on loan.— Daniel Gabbidon (@Gabbidon35) January 29, 2018
Benitez, who is known for his focus on defensive solidity at the back as a manager, has looked to keep things tight and that means his strikers have suffered as a consequence.
New signing Joselu has managed to score four times, while Dwight Gayle has only three. Aleksander Mitrovic is expected to leave in the near future, and he has found the back of the net only twice this term.
However, the Toon will have to look elsewhere if they are to finally sign a striker, with Sturridge overlooking the north east outfit as he looks to show Gareth Southgate why he deserves to be on the plane to Russia in the summer.