Brendan Rodgers runs rule over Liverpool star Daniel Sturridge

The Liverpool manager explains why Daniel Sturridge is key to the Reds

Brendan Rodgers says Daniel Sturridge makes the difference to Liverpool after a 3-2 victory over Aston Villa at Anfield on Saturday.

James Milner broke the deadlock within 120 seconds before Sturridge scored twice in eight second-half minutes to seal three points for the Merseyside outfit and end a four-game winless run.

The 26-year-old forward hadn’t scored for the Reds since March at Old Trafford after Sturridge was forced to undergo a hip operation to solve a niggling problem which cut his 2014/15 season short.

And Rodgers, whose position has been under threat in recent weeks, explained why Sturridge is so important to the 18-time English champions.

“Sturridge showed what we missed for over a year – he makes the difference and helps you compete,” Rodgers told BBC Sport.

“His finishes were brilliant. He’s nowhere near 100% fit yet. There was a couple of moments when he’d be away at his best but wasn’t today. His two goals were the difference.”

Sturridge has scored 37 goals in 57 Premier League games for Liverpool since his £12m move to Anfield from Chelsea in January 2013.

MORE: Read the latest Liverpool player tweets

The Reds face bitter rivals Everton at Goodison Park in their next Premier League fixture.

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