Rodgers Outlines Plan For Coping Without Sturridge

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By Adrian Back | December 3, 2013 3:48 AM EST

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has called on his players to stand up and be counted in the absence of Daniel Sturridge who will be out of action until the New Year.

The Merseyside club struggled without Sturridge at the weekend but Philippe Coutinho is in contention to start against Norwich City on Wednesday evening. However, the club will have to check on the fitness of Kolo Toure who picked up an injury in the loss to Hull City.

Toure sustained a hip injury in the shock 3-1 defeat at the KC Stadium and will be assessed by the medical team on Tuesday.

"We'll assess that in the next 24 hours, but hopefully he should be available," Rodgers told reporters at the pre-match press conference.

Rodgers does have plenty of available options as Mamdou Sakho and Daniel Agger could be called into action if the Ivorian defender is forced out of the game at Anfield.

While the Liverpool boss must wait to discover whether Toure is available he will be able to select Coutinho who was a substitute at the weekend after picking up a ankle strain in the draw with Everton.

The Brazilian came on in the 65th minute but could now return to the starting XI as Liverpool look to bounce back against a Norwich side who have won just four league games this season.

"Philippe will be fine," confirmed Rodgers. "He's had no further reaction from the game yesterday. He's trained this morning, so all being well he'll be fit."

The Reds will be keen to return to winning ways against Norwich but they will be without in-form striker Daniel Sturridge who faces some six to eight weeks on the sidelines after damaging the ligaments in his ankle.

With Sturridge out of action Rodgers has called upon the team to react in a positive manner, saying: "The responsibility is for the people coming in and for the rest of the team.

"We have to find a different way of getting the result and I'm confident, as I see enough of the players every day, to know that we will fight in order to do that.

"Daniel is going to be out for a period of time. But we'll cope. It's the responsibility of everyone. We can't rely on one player - it has to be about the team and that's what we'll focus on."

Sturridge had been in superb form this season, scoring 11 goals in all competitions, and has vowed to work hard and return to action as quickly as possible.

"Keeping the faith," tweeted Sturridge. "I'm pushing myself to be better than before the injury. God willing a quick recovery and I'll be back playing soon!

"I'm gutted right now man, keeping it real. Thanks for all the kind words. To all my fans thanks for the support. Means a lot to me."

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