Despite a debut World Cup goal Daniel Sturridge admitted he was “disappointed and heartbroken” to finish on the losing side against Italy and vowed the team would bounce back in Thursday’s match with Uruguay. The Liverpool striker, whose contribution was described as “exceptional” by Roy Hodgson, more than justified the decision to hand him the No9 shirt and start him up front on his own. Sturridge, who came into the tournament in a rich vein of form and bubbling with confidence, said that, despite his goal, he felt he had let the nation down. “It’s my mum’s birthday on Sunday and I was just trying my heart out to make her happy and put a smile on her face as well,” he said. “Obviously I’m gutted we didn’t win the game because I feel like I’ve let, not just everyone in England but my family down as well.” Sturridge, like his manager and his captain for club and country, Steven Gerrard, bemoaned England’s bad luck but said there were many encouraging aspects to a sometimes swashbuckling display. “We played very good football, we were exciting, we looked great going forward, we did defend well,” he said. “It was just one of those nights. Sometimes you don’t get the breaks and those fine inches, where the keeper makes a save or a rebound doesn’t go to you. There are no excuses, we played well – we just didn’t get the result.” Sturridge referred to England’s two remaining Group D matches – against Uruguay on Thursday and Costa Rica five days later – as cup finals and said that Hodgson’s squad would attack them with a positive attitude. “I’m disappointed and heartbroken because I do feel we deserved something out of the game,” the 24-year-old said. “But there are two big games. I’m positive, I have got a positive attitude, I’m going into them excited. I’m going into the games knowing we can get something out of them. “Regardless of the opposition, regardless of the other results, we would have gone into the next game with the same mentality, which is to win anyway.” Sturridge’s ability to link up with his Liverpool team-mate Raheem Sterling was one of the more encouraging aspects of England’s display and the striker said they would approach the next two games with similarly attacking intent.
Daniel Sturridge gutted after ‘letting everyone in England down’
The Guardian | Jun 16