It’s certainly been a rough time for the fans, having to deal with the loss of Luis Suarez in the summer, the injuries to Daniel Sturridge and the difficulties surrounding Mario Balotelli. Beyond that, the remaining players have looked mentally drained and it has shown in performances and results.
With Sterling’s stalling contract talks reportedly bringing interest from big clubs looking to muscle in, the last thing that we need right now is to lose another top quality player.
The last thing Sterling needs is public scrutiny following reports he is set to reject a substantial £70,000-per-week offer. But now people will get on his back and call him greedy. At a difficult time for the club, young Raheem must be allowed to concentrate on playing football to help turn around a frustrating season.
His agent needs to stop trying to engineer a better pay-day for himself and instead help his client focus on becoming the world-class player we all know he can be. That would start by keeping things like private negotiations private, historically the Liverpool way of doing things.
Sterling will soon be the calibre of player that can command a top level contract, meaning this is not an issue that needs to be forced now. If the player himself is concerned about getting as much money as quickly as possible, he needs to take a step back and realise such things will naturally fall into place if he focuses on his game. It’s no coincidence that the best players in the world earn the most money.
At just 20 years of age, Sterling represents the future of our club and is as talented a youngster as we have seen since Steven Gerrard burst on to the scene.
Brendan Rodgers recently called for other players to step up and take Gerrard’s talismanic mantle – Sterling can do that, but only if he is allowed to develop outside of a negative media spotlight and away from rumours about his future.
The fans certainly don’t need to deal with it right now and it will be best for him, the club and even his pushy agent if such issues are dealt with in a more constructive manner.
Our form in the Premier League hasn’t been good enough this season and we need to concentrate on making sure we are in contention for a top four finish in May.
A club with our history and tradition deserves to be playing in Europe’s premier competition and anything less is not good enough.