“At half-time we made changes tactically but also reinforced the mentality. They're real good players and it's important you don't let it (the game) pass you by – go and make something happen.”
The half-time introduction of new signing Sturridge bolstered the visitors’ attack, with the forward becoming the first player since Nigel Clough in 1993 to score on his first two appearances for the club.
“He is going to score many goals for Liverpool, “ said Rodgers. “He had one goal and was unlucky a couple of times when he tried to organise his feet inside the box and just couldn't quite get a shot off.
“He is going to be a terrific signing for us. But I wasn’t tempted to start him. I've been assessing him in training.
“He's coming back and sometimes you can rush a player back too quickly and break them. I didn't want to do that with Daniel.”
Television replays suggested Vidic may have been offside when Patrice Evra’s header deflected off him into the net, but Rodgers responded: “I'm more disappointed with how we defended it, to be honest.
“We've got to do better at the back post. The ball has been played in, our line was okay but we've got to defend it better than that.”
Liverpool have yet to beat nay of the teams in the top half of the table, a failing Rodgers admits must be addressed if hopes of a strong second half of the season are to be realised.
“We've been close in a number of games against the teams at the top end of the league, but that's the next step for us.
“To win those games, that can set your journey off in a totally different direction. It's going to be a long journey for us, but it's about closing the gap in the squad, getting those wins against the rivals and then we can gain confidence from that.”