Liverpool face Stoke City on Sunday ahead of their crucial Europa League decider against Borussia Dortmund in midweek, leaving manager Jurgen Klopp with some important decisions to make regarding his team selection.
Klopp surprisingly decided to field 20-year-old striker Divock Origi ahead of the more experienced Sturridge in the crucial Europa League quarter-final first leg against former club Dortmund, and the Belgian striker responded very well by scoring a crucial away goal for the Reds.
“I always think about Daniel even when he’s not available, but he was and we decided only for this game for Divock [Origi] and I think it was a good decision,” Klopp was quoted as saying by the Liverpool Echo.
“His response (Sturridge’s) was very good when he was on the pitch, you saw immediately how strong he is and how good he is and that’s very good for us. Now he’s rested and of course he’s involved in all my thoughts for tomorrow.”
Lot of competition for the striker’s position
Klopp finds himself in the unusual position of having to choose between four players for the striker’s role in his Liverpool team. However, the German insists that he likes being spoilt for choice.
“That’s the best situation you can have. I don’t see it like this, I don’t think there’s a challenge between them,” said the German.
Currently, Klopp can choose between Sturridge, Origi, Roberto Firmino and Christian Benteke for the striker’s position at Liverpool. The latter has clearly not been in good touch, having scored just seven goals in the Premier League this season.
Sturridge, on the other hand, has been injured for the majority of the season and has ongoing fitness issues. However, the England international has shown that he still has the scoring touch, netting four times from six Premier League appearances this campaign.
Firmino is a player who adds a different dimension to the attack as he plays the role of a false no.9 and gives the Reds more bodies in midfield. However, Origi seems to be a good young prospect for Liverpool and has shown that he does not shy away in the bigger games. His goal at the intimidating Signal Iduna Park was very crucial for Liverpool, and given more chances, the 20-year has the potential to go on and become the side’s top scorer.