18 Feb 2013

'He's fantastic' - LFC legends hail 'amazing' £12m star. Better than Torres...?

Liverpool legend Ray Houghton has praised the impact and influence of new Reds striker Daniel Sturridge, who put in another excellent performance yesterday against Swansea City.

With five goals and one assist in seven appearances now, Sturridge is having a a big impact at Anfield, and Ray Houghton - who won two league titles under Kenny Dalglish - is impressed with the £12m signing. He told LFC TV:

"He [Sturridge] is amazing. He’s got such balance and belief in his ability. It’s like the ball is tied to his foot. He's surprised me, I have to admit. I was a little but worried when Sturridge first came in as I thought it would take a while for him to fit in but it’s like he’s been playing here for years. He's been fantastic."

Most fans probably had reservations on some level about Sturridge; I know I did, but like Houghton says, it's like he's been at Anfield for years, and the partnership with Luis Suarez is showing a lot of promise. After the game, Reds Hero Dietmar Hamann joined Houghton in praising Sturridge:

"The biggest asset that Sturridge brings to the club is pace. When he starts running in behind, the backline has to drop off, which leavs little holes for Downing, Gerrard and Suarez to exploit. So far, the way they [Suarez and Sturridge] work together has been excellent"

Pace is always a massive benefit in any player, but for me, Sturridge's close-control, strength and ability to hold the ball up are his main assets. He hardly ever gives the ball away, and his supreme confidence in possession borders on arrogance, which is most definitely a good thing. Liverpool need players with a bit of swagger and self-confidence, and Sturridge certainly fits the bill.

In his post-match interview, Sturridge admitted he was getting frustrated during the game after missing several chances, and paid tribute to Steven Gerrard for letting him take the penalty:

"Of course I was [getting frustrated], but Stevie was very nice to me and let me have the penalty. I guess he knew my pain! Before that, the keeper was making some good saves, and he got the better of me"

Liverpool allegedly wanted Sturridge as part of the deal that took Fernando Torres to Chelsea, but according to Sturridge himself, that option was never on the table (Skip to 1:50)

Fernando Torres had a similarly exciting impact when he first arrived at Liverpool, but who is the better player? Would you rather have the Spaniard or Sturridge...? Imagine Torres (circa 2007), Suarez and Sturridge in the same team...

NOTE: Please stick to the Comment Policy (Click to read)


  1. He definitely holds the ball up excellently and that already helps when we go forward. Good thing too that he seems to have stopped his silly celebratory goal dance...!

  2. Sturridge is everything Nando once was. Too bad for Chelsea they just didn't see it! The Sturridge/Suarez partnership is what the Torres/Suarez combination was meant to be, although Torres was crocked and the club was dying to get rid at that point, especially since Chelsea were bidding that much.

    Indeed, Sturridge makes a tremendous difference. He is our own Cavani/Huntelaar who allows Suarez to shine and is able to take full advantage of what Suarez offers. The signs that Coutinho will combine well with them is there too. It is a shame we will probably be knocked out of the UEFA cup because Sturridge and Coutinho are ineligible to play for us!

  3. Thing is, Chelsea don't have a Suarez type player to play with Sturridge. Torres, Drogba, Anelka were all targetmen and logically Sturridge came behind them at least in experience and reputation. Look at Lukaku, he's also had to go out on loan. Now they have Hazard and had they played Sturridge up front with Hazard, Oscar and Mata behind him, they might have been in a better position right now and DiMatteo would still be in a job. In fairness I don't think anyone had expected Sturridge to make such an impact, so fast. I know I didn't. I never thought it would work but it has and fair play to Rodgers for pushing it through.

  4. I was never worried about him, I knew he would be a success. he just needed to chance to show his abilities, and by that I mean a good run in the first team, which he wasnt getting at Chelsea.

  5. Happy to see him do well did a good job at Bolton during a brief stint hope he can keep it up.

  6. I feel like a wise old tree at the moment. While everyone was resigned to more mediocrity surrounding his transfer, I always thought he'd be a success, because of his arrogance, technical skill, speed and composure. He can finish too. As far as I'm concerned, and undoubtedly many people at the moment, he is ten times better than Carroll. Some people against his transfer I'm sure were one of the people arguing Carroll has a future at LFC. Sure, he may have weaknesses, like any player does, such as being too selfish sometimes? But these weakness are vastly over-clouded. His impact on the team has already been manifested in a non-physical presence, as seen in the games against West Brom and the racists. It may still seem too premature to glorify him, but after such an impressive start, I really can't see him being a liability at any time in the future.

  7. Don't exaggerate. Sturridge has done very well since arriving, but comparing him with Torres of 07-08 is ridiculous.
    Torres was the third best player in the world that season, and was playing amazingly well. Sturridge isn't there yet, but he is definetly a very good player that enhances the quality of the squad greatly.

    I also find it hard to compare him to Torres because they don't play the same style of football. Torres wasn't the trickiest of players, but he was much more complete, scoring with both feet and his head.
    DS(hey, just noticed he's got the same initials as me) loves to dribble, and usually shoots with his left foot. All of the goals he scored for us were left footed strikes.
    He has massive potential, and a very good ability, but I don't believe he'll get to be one of the best players in the world. He can achieve becoming one of the best strikers though(maybe in the stature of Higuain).

  8. If you're one of the best strikers in the world, then it equally means you're one of the best players in the world.

  9. When Torres joint us he was much more fantastic than DS. DS is improving in every game. He is very fast and sharp.

  10. I meant that in my perspective he will never challenge for the Ballon d'Or...
    That's my pespective for being the best.

  11. He can dance to kingdom comes. As long as he is banging in the goals.

  12. With Sturridge in the team and Coutinho, our team dynamics has transformed. Sad we will not see it this thursday against Zenit.

  13. It was obvious DS would be a success, simply due to our desperation for a player like him. He has nowhere near the finishing ability of Torres in 07 and 08. And by finishing i dont just mean shooting, i mean picking the ball up in the opposition half and producing a goal.

    I believe you can judge a stirker's ability by their success at 1 on 1s. Id always back torres to score, but at the moment daniel seems to waste a few good chances. However I back him 100% to improve this aspect of his game by next season, having had a full half season of being the no1 striker. He is already more skillful than torres, and far more versatile, he can have a patner and play wide.

  14. It would be unfair to judge Sturridge just after a few games and compare him with Nando ,because Nando carried the burden of goal scoring for that period ,but DS is young and will definitely get better.

  15. too early to compare the them. i would say though, that sturridge has possibly shown that he has a few more tricks in his armour.

  16. you must be watching a different game because sturridge looks as good if not better than torrez ether was 

  17. Sturridge has more dimensions to his game than Torres, better close control, better playing with back to goal, better ball distribution. Torres few years ago was a top top finisher which is the one area Torres is better.
    I always thought he was good in that last season he was joint top scorer for Chelski despite less games!
    What still baffles me is that a lot of people questioned his attitude, I don't know why? IMO its an unwarranted label!

  18. Totally agree Mark with the transfer swap. Just because he dances when he scores, automatically it equates to arrogance! The lad is enjoying himself. Something alot of players could learn from especially on the international stage, in England we're too serious hence why players are always bricking it! Plus he's Jaimacan heritage means he'll always bring some swagger!

  19. sturridge bottles out of 50/50 challenges and blows hot and cold. people need to remember not to overhype players, cause we have not seen him at his worst yet. better than torres at his best pffff dont joke.

  20. I think it's way too early to say whether Sturridge is going to be as good as or better than Torres. Having said that, from what I've seen in his first few games for us, he is a better player than I thought he was! He definitely has a lot more in his locker than people have given him credit for. There were a couple of occasions where things went awry against Swansea, like when he completely misread a great dummy by Suarez, and when he was a little slow on to a ball over the top that Vorm gathered.On the whole, though, I've been impressed with his off-the ball movement and his link-up play with Suarez. He definitely has more than just a quick pair feet.

  21. if he is as good as torres we should expect a 50m bid in a few years 7 games is nothing andy carroll against city looked top class when he banged 2 in

  22. one of the things i really love abt this guy is his confidence. In this aspect, he is similar to Torres when he first arrive (think we have to check under Torres's skirt now to try to find that!). As much as i totally dislike our current season, i certainly hope our two new boys can galvanise the team.

    Dan has to do way more and way longer before he can be compared to what Torres had achieved here but i think we can say honestly to him that we will love him no lesser than what he will put in for the club. YNWA.

  23. he scored with his right foot on his debut against manfield. only really special players are both footed, like suarez, ronaldo. certain players who have high self esteem and full of confidence often take shots with their weaker foot as they believe their so good (nani nd sturridge)...but expect many more right footed shots from sturridge, as he is just one of them players that plays by what he knows. he can have the ball, then do stepovers and do a random skill of the top of his head, the ball will be at his right foot and he will shoot with it. he certainly one of those players

  24. having a squad of confident players with high self-esteem is the key to success. along with other signings, liverpool should do their best to manipulate the transfer market by catching teams and players at the best stage for a transfer

    Hatem Ben Arfa (25) - right winger with bags of tricks, pace and a powerful shot. very confident, and capable of skilling up a whole team if he has to. will add plenty of goals to our RW position (at least 10 with 15 assists). he will fit in extremely well with rodgers system of players cutting in on their stronger foot and can also be rotated along midfield. £10M

    Adel Taarabt (23) - attacking midfielder also with bags of tricks, and like sturridge often called very greedy, this player is capable of taking on many players and is very very talented. already adept to PL football he will suit rodgers style well, and has alot of confidence and work rate to his game. with QPR set to be relegated, we can get him on a cheap. £6.5M

    Mohamed Diame (25) - skillful, tough tackling, non-stop running, offensive minded defensive midfielder who has plenty of confidence to dribble out with the ball and create things for him teammates. very solid in terms of tackles and interceptions and with a £3.5M release clause in his contract this is a bargain. £3.5M

    Ashley Williams (28) - good centre back who knows rodgers system very well and captain/leader at both international and club level. £8M

    greedy players seem to gel well together (look at suarez and sturridge, their both incredibly greedy) and with rodgers style football in place this should be a fluent team.

    rw-ben arfa---am-taarabt--------lw-coutinho

  25. What do you define as challenging for the Ballon D'or? Being on the nominations list or being in the top half of that list? PLayers like RVP and Rooney are one of the best strikers in the world, and that's reflected when you see them in the Ballon D'or nominations list, meaning they're also one of the best players in the world. If Sturridge gets to their level, he'll be on the Ballon D'or list, and be ultimately one of the best in the world.

  26. Sorry, mate - and I respect this is your opinion here, but that tea, is pump!

    You've taken Sturridge out of the starting XI, his presence allows Suarez to play more and, as we have recently seen, he's playing better when there's a proper number 9 up top (Ajax did this with Huntelaar with great success).
    Ben Arfa, as good as he is when he's playing, is a bit injury prone.
    Taarabt thinks he's better than he is.
    As for a centre back, I'd rather see Simon Kjaer alongside Agger, they work well for Denmark, or someone else from the Bundesliga.

  27. Believe it or not but in the summer 2011 I was actually talking with a colleague telling him how badly I wanted Liverpool to buy Sturridge, it was right after he returned to Chelsea from a loan to Bolton, and I gotta say Im pretty happy with myself that Ive been proven right so far, may it long continue.

  28. You're right about the goal vs. Mansfield. I still thinks he's avoiding the use of his right leg for shots, but I might be mistaken. We'll let time to the talking.

  29. Jason Carr say something nice about a Black Player you seem to have nothing to say

  30. I'll say recieving a vote in the Ballon d'Or poll will mean you are at the top.

    Rooney of last season was definetly up there with the best, and RVP is obviously at the top right now.

    I will again say - yes, DS might become one of the top strikers, but it does not mean he will be accounted as an unbelievable talent such as these players at their peak: Zlatan, Messi, Ronaldo(Portugal), Ronaldo(Brazil), Batistuta, Buffon, Zidane, Ronaldinho, SG, Kaka, Torres, Sneijder, Pirlo, Casillas, JT, Maldini, Henry and the list of legends can go as far as you want, probably until Di Stefano's era.

    Obviously, I am claiming he can be a massive success, but so were the likes of Fowler, Mcmanaman, and others, who were never on that list.

    If you want me to be even more harsh just for the sake of the argument(which again - only said I don't think DS will get to Torres's level at his peak) - I'd say only winning one of the top 3 spots should be accounted as "the best" - and then Torres obviously once belonged there, whereas I cannot see DS ever achieving it.

  31. Taarabt really? hes so selfish and it always amounts to him NOT scoring and gettin further and further away from it during a match.
    Ben Arfa will be great but we have Coutinho now and Downing is great too he should be allowed to stay and build on it. Diame would be a good signing though but Id rather see Benat or Lucas Biglia. We should also keep Skrtel remember form is temporary class is permanent remember him last year? Him and Agger brings the best out of each other and such a good partnership is priceless and not a commen sight. We will need a good backup defender but we still have Kelly and he can play cent def. And last how can you Not have Sturridge in the lineup?

    We should sell Coates/Allen/Spearing/Carroll = 25-30m
    then buy Biglia or Benat,Mertens and a good back up def.


    I think Williams is a good defender but im not sure if he will be that at LFC remember his dislike towards Suarez also, I dont know who we should bring in as backup def so right now I would go with Kelly when he returns.

  32. Jason Carr only talks trash ,
    I heard he never been to a match in his life ,
    I think Shelvey was talking about ,

  33. Look at this way -

    Torres joins Liverpool for £24m

    Scores 65 goals in 102 appearances

    Leaves for Chelsea in a £50m transfer

    In 72 appearances he has scored 14 goals

    Sturridge joins Liverpool on a £12m transfer, in 6 apps he has scored 5 goals.

    I know who I would want, selling Torres has probably grown to become the best decision Liverpool have made. Seriously the joke is on Chelsea for selling a player on what I consider a bargain to the club who sold Torres for £50m to them - now Sturridge can possibly score more goals for Liverppol than Torres has in 2years for Chelsea. Yes Torres was amazing for Liverpool but I just can't stop laughing how Chelsea have made this in to a whole big mess.