The Raheem Sterling contact saga has taken another turn with the England international informing Liverpool that he will not discuss a new contract until the end of the season.
Sterling’s contract runs out at the end of next season and it is boggling to me that Liverpool have let the situation get this far. If Liverpool cannot reach an agreement with Sterling, they will be forced to sell him his summer, or risk seeing him walk for free in 2016
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has repeatedly said that Sterling was close to signing a new deal, and recently said that Anfield would be the best place for the 20-year-old to further his career:
“It is something we can’t worry ourselves on,” he said.
“The boy is happy here and I repeat, if you have the interest of the kid and his football development at this stage of his career, this is the best place to be.”
Rodgers can issue all the plaudits he wants, but Sterling apparently has two concerns with staying at Liverpool. One is that Rodgers has been playing him as a wingback in his 3-5-2 formation, a position that Sterling apparently dislikes. We saw for England on Friday how dynamic Sterling can be when pushed further forward, a role he wants to also play for his club.
The second issue is Champions League football. Sterling had a taste of football’s elite competition this season and wants to continue to test himself against the best players in Europe. But this was Liverpool’s first season back in the Champions League since 2009/10 and at the moment they will not be in the competition next season.
If Sterling wants to leave Liverpool, there will be a host of clubs lined up to sign him including Manchester City, Bayern Munich and Real Madrid. One interesting option would be Arsenal, who have their own contract saga going on with an England player in Theo Walcott. Brendan Rodgers is said to be a big fan of Walcott, and a swap between the two clubs would be interesting with Walcott and cash going to Anfield and Sterling heading to the Emirates.
Do you think Liverpool will sign Sterling to a new deal or will he be sold in the summer?