The ending between Roy Hodgson and Liverpool when he managed the club for half a season wasn’t a happy one. Ever since, there’s not a lot of love between the sides, and there’s a chance that playing Daniel Sturridge while he wasn’t completely fit for England to play in international friendlies, causing him to pick up an injury that’s now keeping him off the pitches for almost two months.
Why did Hodgson play him against Ireland and Germany? According to the England manager, it was to test his resolve. Reading deeper into his words and into his non-apology for costing Liverpool someone who is one of their most important players this season, it sounds as if he isn’t too surprised Sturridge picked up an injury, and not too sad about it either.
Dan has pulled out of a few matches with us for injury reason. The first game he played, against Ireland, he got injured. It was important for me to, if you like, test his resolve a little bit. I suppose you could argue we did put his resolve a little bit to the test. I might have been guilty of putting that resolve to the test, but I don’t apologize for it. And I am delighted he did get out there, even though he maybe himself didn’t feel 100 per cent because that means in future I will know I can trust him as an England player and he is not going to be playing when he feels like it — he is going to be playing when he’s fit to play. He had scans and there was nothing on the scan. I believe the injury that kept him out at the weekend was nothing to do with the injury he was complaining about after playing for Liverpool.
Hodgson is angry he was sacked, but he’s even angrier about the way he was treated by the club this season, as the England manager wasn’t given any special treatment, special seats or anything like that when he arrived to watch a match at Anfield. Reports suggest Hodgson, who didn’t stick around to watch the match like a common man, left the stadium fuming. It won’t be too surprising that playing Sturridge twice while knowing he’s injured had something to do with personal issues.