Daniel Sturridge in contention to start for Liverpool v Manchester City

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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed Daniel Sturridge could start against Manchester City

Brendan Rodgers says Daniel Sturridge is in contention to start against his old club Manchester City, despite fresh worries over his fitness.

The Liverpool manager does admit he is having to manage the striker carefully after an injury disrupted season in order to prevent any further setbacks.

Sturridge made a scoring return to the Liverpool side on 31 January against West Ham having had five months out with calf and thigh injury complications.

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Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has revealed Daniel Sturridge could start against Manchester City

Rodgers said: "Daniel had given everything in the game. This is a player coming back from five months out injured. We have to be really, really careful he doesn't break. Daniel's history shows that.

"There has been very little training in between games. He had no more left in his legs and we needed to take him off to prevent him getting an injury when he was very tired."

Sturridge joined Manchester City back in 2006 at the age of 16 and went on to make 21 league appearances - scoring five goals, before signing for Chelsea when his contract expired in 2009.

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Looking ahead to the Super Sunday lunchtime game with Manchester City, Rodgers said: "You don't need to be a sports scientist to work out that, if you arrive back at 04.30 on Friday morning and have a game early on Sunday, then physically there's going to be a cost.

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"But if you look at where the team is at there is no psychological damage from the other night. You can't dwell on it. The players gave everything over the two games, we were reasonably solid in the game and one mistake cost a goal. It is a different competition (on Sunday). We will move on and hopefully finish the season strongly."

While there is disappointment that this particular European adventure is over, Rodgers is grateful that the burden of additional midweek games had been removed as he focuses minds on domestic success.

He said: "A lot of young players have gained invaluable experience in Europe this year and will be better for it.

"We want to be in those competitions and the Champions League consistently for the next number of years but there is no doubt with that out of the way, and after next week's game against Burnley (on Wednesday), we will go to nearly one game a week, which probably for the first time this season will give us chance to prepare every aspect.

"The bigger picture for us is the Premier League and the FA Cup were our priorities, so that is still the case. Between now and the end of the season we will give everything to achieve our objectives."

Watch Liverpool v Manchester City live on Sky Sports 1 Sunday at 11.30am

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