Football

Why Chelsea should have kept Daniel Sturridge

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When Chelsea appointed 33-year-old coach Andre Villas Boas as their new manager in June 2011, it was widely expected that he would bring his star striker from Porto, Falcao, with him to Stamford Bridge.

However, this did not materialise, and Villas Boas stuck with the strikers that he inherited in his move to Stamford Bridge, and also added Belgian wonderkid, Romelu Lukaku.

After Sturridge impressed in his five-month loan spell at Bolton, scoring an impressive eight goals in just 12 Premier League appearances, Villas Boas decided to give the young English striker a chance in the first team, and used him on the right side of a 4-3-3, much like he had done with Hulk at Porto.

The young striker was superb, and netted a fantastic return of four goals in four games from the right wing position, and his performances were hailed by many, including Villas Boas, who likened him to Hulk.

He said: “Daniel offers a few of the characteristics I had with Hulk when I was with him in Porto... He is an extremely quick player, and he has technique at pace."

By the turn of the year, Sturridge had already scored nine Premier League goals. 

After Villas Boas was sacked  from Chelsea and Di Matteo was given managerial duties until the end of the season, Sturridge fell down the pecking order at the club, with Di Matteo reverting the formation to 4-2-3-1, and favouring Kalou on the right side, and Torres or Drogba as the striker.

Sturridge only scored two more goals that season, and finished with 13. In the 2012-2013 season, Sturridge only scored twice more for Chelsea in his final six months at the club, after lengthy spells on the sidelines with injury.

On the 2nd January 2013, he was bought by Liverpool by £12m to try to alleviate the pressure on Luis Suarez, and in the process formed a dangerous striking partnership with the Uruguayan.

Sturridge scored within seven minutes of his Liverpool debut against Mansfield, and also scored on his Premier League debut against Manchester United after coming on as a sub. He went on to score 11 goals in his first six months at Anfield. 

Because of Suarez's lengthy Premier League ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic, Sturridge has so far been used as Liverpool's main striker, and has flourished in the role, scoring three goals in his first three league games of the season. 

Although he has often been criticised for being too greedy with the ball, and for shooting more often than he passes, he looks to have eradicated this flaw at Anfield.

Sturridge has developed into a real team player, who as well as boasting a very impressive goalscoring record, also continues to help out his team mates by contributing regular assists and key passes. 

And there doesn't seem to be a flaw in the young striker's game. Strong, tall, fast, skilful, with a powerful long-shot, as well as a deadly finish, and considering that he is only 24 and yet to reach his peak years, a chance to develop into a key player for both England and Liverpool.

And considering that Chelsea's strikers have found it difficult to score in the Premier League this season, with Torres and Ba both having failed to find the net in their opening games, and with Eto'o being 32-years-old and approaching the final few years as a top class player, Chelsea's decision to let a young and talented striker, who is scoring goals for fun, leave the club seems to be a poor piece of business.

And they could come to regret it.

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Topics:
Daniel Sturridge
Football
Chelsea
Premier League

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This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

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