#Daniel Sturridge has completed his loan move to #West Brom until the end of the season. The striker looks to have fallen out of favour at Liverpool, having made just nine Premier League appearances this season – five of which he started. However, Alan Pardew looks to have handed Sturridge a #world cup lifeline by bringing the striker to the Hawthorns where he will fit as the club’s first choice striker.

Prior to the deal going through, it looked more than likely it would be fellow Premier League strugglers Newcastle who would get the 28-year-old on loan, however a last minute offer from West Brom was enough to tempt the striker into a move to the Midlands.

Sturridge has admitted his delight at the move, claiming he has friends at the club who he’s played with before and also spoke very highly of the manager, claiming he felt the move was the right fit for him. The question on everyone’s lips now is can Sturridge now do enough during the remained of the season to force his way in Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad?

Sturridge's Scintillating Form Ahead Of 2014 World Cup

This time four years ago, times were very different. Daniel Sturridge had formed a formidable striking partnership at Liverpool with Luis Suarez, and Liverpool looked like genuine title contenders. In fact, with just three games remaining, the Reds were five points clear at the top of the Premier League. Unfortunately, an unfortunate loss to Chelsea and a frustrating draw against Crystal Palace was enough to hand the league title to Manchester City.

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Despite the disappointing end to the season, there was no doubting the quality Sturridge possessed.

He scored 21 goals in 29 Premier League appearances that season and was one of the form strikers in the world at the time, seemingly making it the perfect time for a World Cup. He headed into the 2014 World Cup as England’s first choice striker, and made his mark on the competition in the opening game after scoring the equalizing goal for England against Italy. Unfortunately that was as good as things got for both Sturridge and his nation, as England went onto lose that game before losing to Uruguay and drawing to Costa Rica, crashing out of the competition without making it out of the group stages.

The ‘Downfall’ of Sturridge

After a disappointing World Cup campaign, things went from bad to worse for the striker.

Following the tournament, Liverpool sold their other star striker Suarez to Barcelona for £65m, ending a partnership which has set the league alight in the season previous. To add to this, Sturridge suffered an injury-plagued season, missing five months of the season due to recurring injuries. He made just 12 league appearances that season and managed just four goals.

The seasons following saw a similar pattern beginning to emerge. Since his 21 goal season in the 2013-14 league campaign, Sturridge has scored just 17 goals in the three-and-a-half seasons, highlighting the lack of form he has been able to produce due to injuries and runs of inconsistent performances. He has since become the understudy to Roberto Firmino, who finds himself on good form after scoring 10 goals in 23 league games so far this season.

Sturridge’s international career has taken a very similar path, with his last international goal coming over a year ago during England’s 1-0 win over Scotland in a 2018 World Cup qualification game. With the emergence of Harry Kane as England’s new first choice striker as well as Jamie Vardy’s rise to footballing fame, Sturridge has lost his place in the national set up, with many beginning to wonder if he would ever be recalled to the England side. Now with West Brom offering a potential lifeline, what will Sturridge have to do before the end of the season to put himself on the plane to Russia?

What Sturridge Has To Do To Earn A Call-Up

First and foremost, Sturridge’s main aim will be to keep fit. After a number of injury-plagued years at Liverpool, he will be hoping to get a consistent run of games under his belt and to stay fit for the last five months of the season if he is to even stand a chance of selection for England.

He will need to show the kind of form he showed prior to the last World Cup in 2014 if he is to stand out. Southgate already has a number of striking options at his disposal – with the likes of Harry Kane, Jamie Vardy, Marcus Rashford and Jermain Defoe as well as the younger likes of Tammy Abraham and Dominic Solanke who both impressed during their recent England call ups. With all those names also showing good form with their clubs so far this season, Sturridge already has a lot of catching up to do, however a run of consistent strong performances may just give him the edge when it comes to Southgate selecting his final squad.

Ultimately it’ll be a tough task for Sturridge to earn that highly coveted call up to the World Cup squad. However, with West Brom in desperate need for a goal-scoring striker and with Sturridge in desperate need for game-time, he now has what looks like a golden opportunity to resurrect his international career in time for the World Cup.