Raheem Sterling has reached a crossroads in his contract negotiations with Liverpool and taken a seat.
Sterling has decided to put off further contract talks with Liverpool until after the 2014-15 season, the Mail and Sky Sports reported Sunday, citing sources close to the player.
Sources claim Sterling remains happy at Liverpool but has reservations about being played as a wing-back instead of as an out-and-out attacker. Sterling reportedly wants to focus on soccer and help Liverpool end the season successfully, despite closing in on the final two years of his current contract.
Sterling has rejected Liverpool’s previous offers, and there now is some doubt about his future with the Reds. Top clubs in England and Europe reportedly are monitoring Sterling’s contractual situation and are considering making transfer bids for the young attacking star.
Liverpool signed Sterling from Queens Park Rangers in 2010 for £600,000. He shot through Liverpool’s academy and made his debut in March 2012. Sterling made his breakthrough in the 2013-14 season, helping the Reds finish second in the Premier League and qualify for this season’s UEFA Champions League. His development continued this season, and he now is a key player in Liverpool’s lineup, having played 119 games for the club to date.
Liverpool risks losing Sterling as a free agent or being forced to sell him for well below market value if they can’t agree to new terms. Sterling, 20, is one of the most highly rated young players in the soccer world. He represents Liverpool’s hopes for a brighter future, as well as those of England’s national team. Losing Sterling at this point in his and Liverpool’s development would be a blow to the Reds.
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