Liverpool missed Luis Suárez in Merseyside derby, says John Aldridge

Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge feels the Reds missed Luis Suárez's "spark of brilliance" in the Merseyside derby on Sunday

luis suarez
Luis Suárez has scored 23 Premier League goals this season Photo: Back Page Images

John Aldridge believes Liverpool missed Luis Suárez’s “spark of brilliance” in a goalless draw with Everton on Sunday.

The Reds were left frustrated after Steven Gerrard had an attempt cleared off the line by Sylvain Distin, before Phil Jagielka’s last-ditch challenge denied Daniel Sturridge a chance to test Toffees goalkeeper Tim Howard.

Brendan Rodgers’s men are having to cope without Suárez after the striker was banned for 10 games for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic last month – and Alrdidge reckons his former club needed Suárez’s genius to win the derby.

“Brendan Rodgers brought on Fabio Borini but looking at the bench, we didn’t have enough options to make something happen,” Alridge wrote in his Liverpool Echo column.

“We may have coped without Luis Suárez at St James’ Park but against Everton he was sorely missed. We needed that spark of brilliance Suárez is capable of.”

Aldridge also reckons Sturridge was affected by the occasion of the Merseyside derby after an ineffectual performance against Everton.

The 23-year-old has barely put a foot wrong since his £12m move from Chelsea in January, scoring seven goals in 12 Premier League appearances for his new club.

But the England international struggled to take the few half chances which fell his way in the goalless draw.

“It was a frustrating first derby for Sturridge. I thought his work ethic was good. He battled away and made some good runs,” added Aldridge.

“Sometimes you have days as a striker when things don’t come off for you. Maybe he sensed what the fixture means to the city and the occasion got to him a bit.

“It can happen – it happened to me in my career. Sometimes you get a bit tetchy and snatch at opportunities that come your way.”

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