Rodgers: "Sturridge return can help give Liverpool a new dimension"

Brendan Rodgers is hoping that the return of striker Daniel Sturridge can help elevate Liverpool to the next level as they seek to put a poor run of form in the past.

The Englishman has been out of action since an FA Cup quarter-final victory against Blackburn Rovers back in April and underwent surgery on a troubling hip injury the next month.

Sturridge has since spent the last four months rehabilitating and building up his fitness in the United States, before returning to training at Melwood before the international break last month.

The 26-year-old, who is desperate to get back into the swing of things, has already began developing a relationship with £32.5 million striker Christian Benteke, who has fired two goals already since a summer switch from Aston Villa.

He has been continuing to make good progress and now could make his long-awaited return to the squad for their Premier League home game against Norwich City on Sunday, with Liverpool looking to end a streak of four games without a win against Alex Neil's side.

Striker can help push Liverpool on to next level

The Reds boss said that Sturridge has been "really positive" in training, showing a "real hunger to succeed" - particularly off of the field, where he said the striker is working hard to ensure he returns fitter and stronger than ever.

He explained that the Englishman, who has not appeared for six months and made just 18 appearances throughout the entirety of last season, has looked "really powerful and fast" and has already demonstrated his quality. 

Rodgers' backroom staff, who have previously not worked with Sturridge behind the scenes, have spoken highly of the forward since his first session back - as the Northern Irishman added that they have seen he is a "different level" of player, who will be able to lift the Reds to "a new dimension" as they seek to improve their form.

So far, the Reds have taken only seven points from five games, losing their last two league games convincingly - but there have been positives for Rodgers to draw from.

One such positive is the impact Benteke has made since coming into the club in July, having hit two goals already this season, and Rodgers is hoping he can form a partnership with Sturridge after he makes his comeback.

He added that the two have been "very impressive" when they have played, saying that their diffeing styles may compliment each other.

Rodgers insisted that they are "two different types" of footballer, but what they bring to the table is "power and pace" and different ways of scoring goals.

He said that having "that quality" in the team can help "spark off" the rest of the side and lift the unit as a whole.

Rodgers hoping Reds can click in the final third sooner rather than later

Rodgers' side have so far fired just four goals in six games in all competitions, a disappointing return given the money they spent on strengthening their attack over the summer.

But their clash with the Canaries this weekend marks the start of a run of four successive Anfield fixtures - which Rodgers believes his side should use to help build momentum.

He explained that there has to be "a purpose to possession" because otherwise it is "no good on its own" unless they penetrate the defence with it.

According to Rodgers, being more direct and purposeful with the ball is something they have been "looking at" with the team, referring to the fact that they have only scored 17 goals in their last 19 games - something he admitted highlights a lack of creativity.

To solve that, Liverpool must have more bravery to take risks and take defenders off, according to Rodgers - who wants his side to have a "really aggressive mindset" in getting forward, something he said they have been "working very hard" on in the training field.

The Liverpool manager explained that they "always" analyse their performances because they are always looking to improve the way in which they "create opportunities and score goals" regardless of whether they win, lose or draw.

He is not concerned about the quality they have in their ranks, however, insisting they have "very good players" to choose from. However, he believes that over the last 19 games, they haven't been good enough in the final third because they have not had the "right dynamic" as well as missing a few of their key attacking players through injuries and suspensions.

Sturridge's availability may also be complimented by the returns of Philippe Coutinho, Joe Allen and Adam Lallana, though captain Jordan Henderson is unavailable after breaking a bone in his foot on his return from another foot injury on Friday.

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