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Didi Hamann claims that Daniel Sturridge was always going to be a brilliant player, with the Liverpool signing showing talent beyond his years despite being sold by both Manchester City and Chelsea.
Sturridge spent part of his youth career at City, before spending three years with the senior side. He was moved on to Chelsea in 2009, and after spending time on loan at Bolton and failing to settle into the Blues squad, Brendan Rodgers swooped with a deal at the beginning of the year.
In three matches for Liverpool, Sturridge has scored in each, and looks to be a breath of fresh air for the attacking line up in a squad that has had to heavily rely on Luis Suarez in the past.
And Hamann insists that the 23 year old was showing his talents long before his move to Liverpool, even if City and Chelsea didn't harness the talent correctly.
"I could see back then what a talent he was," Hamann told Liverpool Echo. "Everyone at City was talking about Sturridge as an exciting young player who had a big future ahead of him.
"When he came into the first team squad, he made a big impression. He had great pace, great feet and could finish.
"It was just a shame that a couple of injuries set him back. After that the situation at City changed dramatically with the club being bought out.
"Suddenly, City were spending a lot of money bringing in players and Sturridge found his game-time limited."
Sturridge recently said that Liverpool was the biggest club he had played for so far in his career, and the England international will be looking build on his great start with the club by helping them push for a top four position.
And Liverpool favourite Hamann admits he's glad that the turn of events at Chelsea and City led Sturridge to Liverpool.
"I certainly wouldn't say he has failed at the clubs he's been at so far," he explained. "City wanted to keep Sturridge and it was his decision to leave.
"It was a big step going to Chelsea and it took him a while to adjust. But it doesn't help a young player when your manager is changing all the time.
"When he went to Bolton on loan two years ago and got a run of games he showed what he's capable of by scoring a lot of goals for a struggling side. All the uncertainty and upheaval at Chelsea certainly didn't help his career and sometimes you need a change of scenery."