Raheem Sterling wanting out of Liverpool should be no great surprise. The biggest players this country has to offer are rarely content with trophyless seasons or without Champions League football. It is all very easy to criticise but it’s a decision that often yields results.
People forget that Wayne Rooney, the talisman of England for over a decade, quit Everton for Manchester United. Though he shone at Euro 2004, an injury sustained at the tournament in Portugal meant the transfer was somewhat a gamble. 17 goals in 77 games at Everton hardly hinted at a ruthless streak.
Sterling is more evolved than Rooney was at his age having been an integral part of the Liverpool side that challenged for the Premier League title last year. He has 11 goals for the season and is already well established in the national side. Greed may not necessarily be the reason for him wanting out.
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After all, Liverpool appear to have regressed over the past 12 months. Luis Suarez went to Barcelona and the £70million they received was in turn blown on the likes of Lazar Markovic, Dejan Lovren and Mario Balotelli. Brendan Rodgers has failed to convince when it comes to the transfer market and no big name stars seem keen to move to Anfield.
Bigger and better things
Luke Shaw was another who could not spurn the advances of United. Despite not offering European football the sheer pulling power of the club saw them pip Chelsea to his signature. Trophies turn heads more than money, and granting a player a wish to move onto bigger things should be met with approval rather than scorn.
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£100,000-a-week was put on the table for him, and duly turned down. If money was the main factor he would of put pen to paper. It seems with Steven Gerrard gone, and Daniel Sturridge crippled by injuries, Anfield is not the place for a young Englishman to be.
Sterling to City?
So where is? Manchester City are the frontrunners for his signature and may test the Reds’ resolve with a bid of £30million. Manuel Pellegrini may be afforded the time his predecessor Roberto Mancini was not, and could swoop to fill the English quota with James Milner apparently on his way out of the Etihad Stadium.
Then there is the London duo of Arsenal and Chelsea. Arsene Wenger may be forced into the market if Theo Walcott departs in the summer, whereas Jose Mourinho may attempt to bring the 20-year-old to the home of the champions, particularly with Juan Cuadrado’s form a key cause for concern.
Sterling should be praised, not berated. Ambition is always an integral part of the game and nobody should be condemned for showing it. If the poster-boy of the future of English football wants to win trophies, then he should be allowed.