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Suarez sends best wishes as Sturridge fills in


Daniel Sturridge

Daniel Sturridge

Daniel Sturridge

FORMER striker Luis Suarez may have gone but he has not forgotten Liverpool and he sent manager Brendan Rodgers a good luck message before their opening victory over Southampton at Anfield.

The controversial Uruguay international, who joined Barcelona in the summer for £75million in the wake of another biting furore and four-month ban, sent his well wishes to manager Brendan Rodgers and his former team-mates yesterday morning.

His old partner Daniel Sturridge did his best to ensure Suarez will not be missed with the winner 10 minutes from time after Nathaniel Clyne had cancelled out Raheem Sterling's first-half opener - although Rodgers is still in the market for a top-quality striker.

"Our ambitions here at Liverpool have to be bigger than one player," said the Reds boss in relation to Suarez.

"He sent us a lovely text this morning wishing us all the best, which was a great gesture. He is a friend now of Liverpool. I texted him back. It's a real love in! He's a great boy but he is gone now.

"We do still want another striker but that will depend on the availability. Today was about winning and we got there."

Sturridge's goal was his 36th in 50 appearances and only George Allan, with 41 in the late 19th century, has scored more goals in his first half century of games for Liverpool.

The England forward was the Premier League's second-highest scorer with 21 after Suarez's 31 last season and he will be expected to contribute even more this campaign.

Despite the critics predicting a tough time for Southampton after a summer exodus of players and manager they performed well and during the second half looked capable of repeating their victory here last season.

"I think we played a great second half, after 1-1 I think there was one team on the pitch playing and it was Southampton," said new boss Ronald Koeman.

"We had a chance to score the second one, two great opportunities but the quality of Liverpool, they don't need many opportunities to score and that makes the difference.

"The way we played today I think brings us a lot of confidence."