• England

Sturridge desperate for World Cup spot

ESPN staff
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Daniel Sturridge missed England's 2-0 defeat to Chile through injury © PA Photos
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Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge is desperate to make it to the World Cup after being "devastated" at missing England's trip to Brazil last summer through injury.

Sturridge, who missed his country's 2-0 defeat against Chile on Friday with a thigh problem, is set to return for Tuesday's friendly against Germany at Wembley.

The 24-year-old has established himself as one of the Premier League's leading strikers since moving north from Chelsea for £12 million in January, scoring 21 goals in 26 starts for Liverpool.

His form won him a first England start against the Republic of Ireland on May 29, but he suffered an ankle injury that forced him to miss the historic trip to Brazil to open the Maracana four days later.

He told the Liverpool Echo: "That was a devastating time for me.

"I had to go on holiday to Jamaica with my crutches and [a protective] boot. It wasn't nice because it was really hot. I was there, just hobbling around.

"I haven't been to Brazil. I have heard it's good. Hopefully I will be on the plane next summer."

Sturridge has put behind him the controversy surrounding comments he made in September that implied he was more concerned about playing for his club than his country.

The striker told Liverpool's website at the time that his main focus was only winning trophies with Liverpool, although he subsequently took to Twitter to claim that his remarks had been misinterpreted. He wants to help England succeed at next summer's World Cup finals, and is hopeful that his strike partnership at international level with Wayne Rooney can be as good as the one with Luis Suarez at Liverpool.

Sturridge and Suarez have hit 16 of Liverpool's 21 Premier League goals between them this season, taking the club to second place in the table. A similarly prolific pairing with Rooney would boost England's hopes of progress in Brazil.

"It can definitely be as good," Sturridge said. "Wazza is a world-class player and it is easy to play with him. I enjoy playing with him. We complement each other's game.

"In training, it is almost like we don't need to work on things. We know where we are, where team-mates are, look over your shoulder and see your team-mate."

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