In Focus: Sturridge won’t be happy as Liverpool prepare to send Ings out on loan

According to reports in the Daily Mail, Liverpool are ready to block a January exit for out of favour striker Daniel Sturridge, who is rated at £18m according to Transfermarkt, with attacking teammate Danny Ings set to be sent out on loan instead.

What’s the word, then?

Well, the Daily Mail says that Liverpool will scupper Sturridge’s attempts to leave the club in the New Year to try and salvage his World Cup hopes, with Jurgen Klopp keen for Ings to instead go out on a temporary basis in order to regain his match fitness and play at a competitive level following successive serious injuries.

The Daily Mail adds that La Liga duo Valencia and Real Betis are keen on Sturridge, who is keen to play more regularly in order to win his place back in Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions squad ahead of the World Cup in Russia in June, but he will be kept as back-up to the first-choice Roberto Firmino.

How has Sturridge done this season?

The 28-year-old has made nine Premier League appearances – with five of those outings coming from the start and four from the substitutes’ bench – scoring two goals and providing a further assist.

However, he has usually found himself behind Firmino in the pecking order despite the Brazilian not being an out-and-out centre-forward, and that has understandably frustrated him.

Sturridge’s time on Merseyside has often been blighted by injury, and he has missed the team’s last three top flight games because of a slight hamstring strain and then illness, and he will be hoping to get game time over the busy festive period.

Are Liverpool right to keep him?

They certainly are.

While they have the likes of Firmino, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane in attack, if Ings leaves then Klopp will only really have Sturridge and Dominic Solanke in reserve, with the latter far from a proven goalscorer at this level like his 28-year-old teammate is.

How will Sturridge feel?

While he will understand, he will also be angry and frustrated as this could be his last opportunity to represent England at a World Cup.

With 18 months left on his contract and no sign of a new deal, the 28-year-old may feel that he should be allowed to leave – at least on loan – now, but instead it looks as though he will have to convince Klopp that he must be starting every game in training and when he gets a chance in the side.