Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was not shy in disclosing his feelings when Daniel Sturridge was injured playing for England last month.
Saying that Sturridge was playing on what would’ve been a recovery day if he were with Liverpool, Rodgers — intentionally or not — opened up the old “club and country” debate.
And England boss Roy Hodgson has very little interest in seeing that argument continue, opening up his Thursday press conference on the topic of Sturridge before discussing his team for the upcoming Euro 2016 qualifiers.
“It’s simply a fact, an unfortunate fact, that he’s not recovered,” Hodgson said of Sturridge’s absence.
“There’s no problems or conflict there at all.”
“He’s not played for Liverpool at all since picking up the injury with us. As I understand it he’s still got some work to do before he’s fully fit,” Hodgson said.
“It’s a great blow to us, Liverpool and the player, because he was anxious to be a part of these two games.”
It seems important that Hodgson mentions Liverpool’s pain to help avoid any deepening issue. At the least it shows how keen he is to avoid playing an ignorant role.
There have been times when a manager would curse his fate or question whether the club was doing its part to help out the nation, but Hodgson clearly gets this part of the modern game.