Liverpool forward Raheem Sterling has stated his excitement to play alongside £16 million signing Mario Balotelli this season. However, the youngster will not be changing his style to suit the Italian superstar.
Sterling broke into the Reds side in August 2012, when impressing Brendan Rodgers during pre-season in the Northern Irishman's first year at the club. Since, the youngster has become an integral member of the Liverpool side and made 33 Premier League appearances last season.
The former QPR man has continued to improve this season and has netted twice in three top flight games along with being awarded man of the match on two occasions.
Despite Balotelli arriving on Merseyside for a hefty fee and a huge reputation, Sterling is adamant that, for the former AC Milan striker to succeed, it will not be at the expense of his own style.
Talking to FourFourTwo, he said: "I’ll just play my normal game – I won’t be changing anything too much. Obviously, I’m going to try and strike up a connection with him."
"He’s a massive player. The manager has brought him in and it’s exciting times for Liverpool.
"This is a step forward after losing Luis [Suarez] at the start of the season. He has come in to try and fill the void left by Luis and I think he has the qualities to do so.
"I’m looking forward to working with him and I think he can be an important player for the club."
Sterling has without a doubt made the correct decision for both himself and his side. The 19-year-old, so far this season, has been Liverpool's best player.
Playing either out wide or just behind the striker, Sterling has looked extremely exciting on the ball, dazzling defenders with his quick feet and speed.
For Balotelli to come in and become the pinnacle of the team would be a completely bizarre decision. Despite the Italian having bundles of talent, he has only played one game for Liverpool so far and yet to settle into the Merseyside club.
Further, Sterling is probably, at this current moment at least, the better of the two. The teenager has been world class for both club and country this campaign and is quickly becoming one of the Premier League's biggest and most frightening talents.
Based on Balotelli's debut in the 3-0 away victory against Tottenham Hotspur, it seems that he and Sterling could become a deadly partnership.
The pair linked up well on multiple occasions and after a few more weeks training with each other, they should only improve their understanding for one-another.
With Daniel Sturridge set to miss Liverpool's next game at home to Aston Villa, the team may rely on both Sterling and Balotelli for goals.
As displayed against Spurs, 'Super Mario' is capable to getting himself into space, as he missed two good chances, one that included a superb save from Hugo Lloris.
As for Sterling, he will continue to threaten the oppositions defence with his pacey runs and getting himself into excellent positions.