Last week proved again that going on international duty isn’t without any risks, as English giants Liverpool again received unpleasant reports about some of their players, with German midfielder Emre Can, Joe Allen and Daniel Sturridge now joining the club’s injury list.
In brief, the 20-year-old German is expected to miss around six weeks of action after suffering an ankle injury while playing for Germany’s U21 squad, as per Liverpool’s official twitter account. Sadly enough, this means that Can’s impressive progress will be on a hold for some time, with the Reds hoping that he will be able to make a quick recovery without any setbacks along the way.
However, Liverpool are more concerned about striker Daniel Sturridge, who already picked up an injury during the Reds’ pre-season tour of the USA. Now, the only one to blame is Roy Hodgson, as he did not allow Sturridge to follow his specialized training routine.
The 25-year-old asked England’s coaching team for such a session last Friday, but though Gary Cahill sat out training that day with a fitness problem, the Liverpool striker was instructed to take part in regular training instead, according to The Guardian.
This leaves Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers in no doubt that his starlet was mishandled and the lay-off was avoidable. “We certainly feel it could have been prevented,” said Rodgers in an interview with James Pearce of the Liverpool Echo. “I think clubs work differently at times to international teams. It’s more the recovery strategy. When we look at our players here, we look at them individually in terms of what their needs are.”
On this occasion, the Liverpool manager’s unhappiness was directed at the England staff, as the Northern Irishman openly accused England of mishandling Sturridge. Unsurprisingly, it isn’t the first time that Sturridge returned to his club with an injury. A year ago he was forced to take a seat on the bench at the start of the Merseyside Derby after returning from international duty.
The Reds are able to make a complaint to the Football Association over Sturridge’s latest injury, as Bayern Munich did when Arjen Robben returned from the 2010 World Cup in South Africa with a thigh-related injury. The reigning German Bundesliga Champions threatened to sue the Dutch Football Federation for financial compensation because they believed that the Dutch winger was used during the World Cup despite knowledge of the seriousness of the injury.
Still, a financial compensation simply isn’t enough for the club, as Sturridge will miss some of Liverpool’s most important games of the season: Middlesbrough in the Capital One Cup, Everton in the Premier League and two Champions League clashes against Ludogorets and Basel.
The real action starts with preventing these kind of injuries by taking the necessary steps. Consequently, that has to begin with even more open lines of communication. Liverpool must act now to see that the ‘prevention rather than cure’ principle is fully applied in the future.