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Chelsea striker Sturridge joins Liverpool

England international Daniel Sturridge has completed his $19.6 million move from Chelsea to Liverpool.

Story highlights

  • Liverpool signs Chelsea and England striker Daniel Sturridge
  • Deal is worth an estimated $19.6 million, with the forward signing a long-term contract
  • Chelsea now hoping to complete move for Newcastle's top scorer Demba Ba
  • Senegal striker given permission to talk to Chelsea after release clause is triggered

English Premier League club Liverpool began its New Year shopping with the signing of Chelsea forward Daniel Sturridge on Wednesday, in a deal worth an estimated $19.6 million.

The 23-year-old, who has won four international caps for England, could make his debut on Sunday against non-league side Mansfield in the FA Cup.

The former Manchester City striker said he is looking forward to teaming up with Luis Suarez, having signed a long-term deal with the mid-table Merseyside club.

Suarez, who has scored 16 goals so far this season, has often been left to lead the Liverpool attack on his own but Sturridge is confident that he can strike up a partnership with the Uruguay international.

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"To have him as a teammate is great," Sturridge told the club's official website.

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    "He's a very good player, very talented and rated as a one of the best players in attacking positions in the world right now.

    "It's good to be part of a team with him in and I'm sure we'll be able to play well together."

    Sturridge, who began his career at Manchester City before joining Chelsea in July 2009, has found his chances at Stamford Bridge somewhat limited.

    Following a successful loan spell at Bolton, where he scored eight goals in 12 games, he found his path into the Chelsea team blocked by the arrival of Fernando Torres.

    After initially being given a chance by Andre Villas-Boas, albeit often out wide instead of his preferred central striking role, he was a peripheral figure under his successor Roberto di Matteo -- and Chelsea's current manager Rafael Benitez has let him leave.

    "I am humbled and happy to be here," Sturridge said.

    "Brendan Rodgers said he sees me here for a long time -- and I also see myself here for a long time. I've not signed here to play for a couple of years and then move on.

    "I've signed to be here for as long as possible. It's a humongous club -- for me, one of the biggest in the world -- and to have the fans and world-class players we have here is amazing."

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    Meanwhile, with Sturridge's departure confirmed, Chelsea stepped up its bid to lure Newcastle striker Demba Ba to London.

    Newcastle confirmed on Wednesday that Chelsea had triggered the player's release clause, thought to be worth around $12 million.

    "Newcastle United can confirm that Chelsea Football Club has made an official offer for Demba Ba which has triggered the release clause in the player's contract," the club's website reported.

    "The club has given the player permission to speak to Chelsea FC and therefore he will not be included in the squad for tonight's game against Everton."

    The 27-year-old, who will play in this month's African Cup of Nations with Senegal, has scored 13 league goals so far this season -- exactly half of Newcastle's total.

    Manager Alan Pardew told Sky Sports: "There is no swift resolution, it's done, he will go to Chelsea with our blessing. He has done fantastically for us, it's a big club, good luck to him.

    "For us, it's not a bad thing because of all the uncertainty of whether he was going to stay is now done. We can move on, we're a massive club here. This club is bigger than any player for sure. In some respects, I'm pleased."

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