Lazar Markovic
Lazar Markovic is doubtful for the game against Everton. Getty

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has claimed Raheem Sterling "is fine" to play against Everton on Saturday, 7 February, despite "a couple of heavy tackles" during the FA Cup win over Bolton, but Lazar Markovic will need to be assessed due to being a "bit sore" in the back

At the same time the manager suggests that Daniel Sturridge will start the Merseyside derby on the bench as he is not fully fit yet.

Two late goals from Sterling and Philippe Coutinho allowed Liverpool to overcome Eidur Gudjohnsen's earlier penalty to secure a 2-1 victory over Bolton on Wednesday 4 February and go through to the fifth round of the FA Cup.

But with Rodgers's side ready to visit Goodison Park on Saturday there were some concerns about Sterling and Markovic after the Serbian wing-back was replaced in the 65<sup>th minute by Fabio Borini.

Speaking after the game, Rodgers played down the worries on the English international but left doubt over Markovic.

"Lazar [Markovic] was just his back - it was a bit sore, but we'll assess that in the morning," Rodgers said.

"Raheem is fine. I think he got a couple of heavy tackles against him tonight but he is very robust and strong. He'll be fine."

Meanwhile, the manager hints Sturridge will be used as a sub in the Merseyside derby after the striker just played 20 minutes – replacing Joe Allen – during the game against Bolton.

Sturridge returned to action after five months on the side-lines during the victory over West Ham United on Saturday 30 January and even though he scored a goal Rodgers suggests he is not yet ready to play 90 minutes.

"It's just managing that game time. He's a top talent. Obviously when he's fully fit, he plays - it's as simple as that," he said.

"He's not at that stage yet, but he's a great player for us at the moment to come off the bench, and he is getting there every day."

Rodgers will provide further information on the Liverpool trio later today (on Thursday) during the press conference ahead of the derby.