Gerrard heaps praise on Sterling.
Gerrard heaps praise on Sterling..

Gerrard backs Liverpool star for World Cup place

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Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has backed exciting young winger Raheem Sterling for a place in England's World Cup squad heading for Brazil this summer, reports Sky Sports.

The 19-year-old has been in impressive form for the Anfield club this season, and Gerrard believes Three Lions boss Roy Hodgson will be keeping his eye on the teenager closely.

"Raheem has been in great form over the last couple of months and I'm sure Roy is watching him very closely," he told Liverpool's official website.

"The Arsenal game (where he scored two goals) was an unbelievable performance from a guy of that age. I was just disappointed he didn't go on and get his hat-trick.

"His form of late has been sensational and if he continues that until the end of the season, we will see him at the World Cup."

Brendan Rodgers has been true to his word and given youth a chance at Liverpool, with Sterling just one of a number of academy graduates to have successfully made the step-up into the first-team.

Gerrard has now called for Sterling to add consistency to his game, and says once he does so, he will be regarded as a truly world-class talent.

"He just needs to keep learning and listening to Brendan Rodgers and the experienced players in the dressing room and believing in himself," he continued. "If he does that, he'll be all right.

"I said to him before we played Everton (a 4-0 win at the end of January), 'Put yourself in the full-back's position - what doesn't he want? He doesn't want you to keep running at him'.

"Raheem was relentless that night. He kept going and going. He gave the Everton full-backs a torrid afternoon and he did it to Arsenal.

"Now he has to do it every week and get that consistency in his game. If he gets that consistency, he is going to be a frightening talent."

Liverpool currently find themselves in fourth place in the Premier League table, and on course to qualify for the Champions League next season. Their upturn in form has been thanks largely to a prolific forward line, which has been supplied by the creative spark of Sterling and others.

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