Raheem Sterling may consider buying out the remainder of his Liverpool contract in order to earn a more lucrative move to another club, it has been claimed.
Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City have all been linked with the winger, who Liverpool insist will not be sold in the approaching transfer window, despite the apparent uncertainty over his future.
Rob Shepherd in the Mail on Sunday has the inside track on the developments regarding Sterling and the contract impasse with Liverpool, and his latest report will be a real worry for the club’s supporters.
Shepherd claims Sterling could force his way out of Anfield this summer by paying £1.7 million to buy out his contract, which still has a two years remaining, with Premier League regulations entitling him to do so.
The 20-year-old would be able to buy the final year of his deal which, if he chose to do so, would mean just a season would remain on the contract this summer. This would hypothetically result in a significantly decreased transfer fee.
Sterling is valued at a reported £50 million by Liverpool but it is suggested they may rather accept half of that fee than lose the England international for nothing in 2017.
An outlay of £1.7 million for Sterling would hardly be much of a stretch given that he would be in line for a signing on fee were he to leave, while he would push for at least four times his current £35,000-per-week salary.
It would be a sensational decision were Sterling to do this, and one that would set a concerning precedent. But the loss of Liverpool could be the gain of one of their rivals.
Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City have all been credited with an interest and, were he offered a choice of the three, it would be interesting to see which club Sterling would pick.
Manchester City will drive hard to recruit English players this summer and beyond given the quota issues they have and they can, of course, offer Sterling the type of salary he feel he deserves.
As could Chelsea, of course, and the versatility of Sterling would certainly be appealing to Jose Mourinho. However, this has caused problems for the youngster at Liverpool, with frustration setting in given how often his position is chopped and changed.
Arsenal would seem to be outsiders in this race for Sterling, although Arsene Wenger has proved in recent windows that he is capable of working his magic in the transfer market.
Liverpool fans: do you think Raheem Sterling is being greedy? Let us know below!