Raheem Sterling believes he still has everything to prove to his manager
England winger Raheem Sterling says he still has a lot to prove before he can say he is a fully fledged member of Liverpool’s first-team.
It has been something of a whirlwind rise over the past year for the 18-year-old, having gone from a promising academy graduate last summer to appearing in 27 Premier League matches for the Anfield club, crowning it all off by making his England debut against Sweden last November.
After an impressive opening season, the lightning-quick attacker will not let the hype affect him as he looks to prove to his manager Brendan Rodgers that he deserves to be in the team.
Sterling, who missed out on appearing for England Under-21s in the Euro Finals last month due to a thigh injury, said: “As young lad I just have to go out there and play my game. People are going to be expecting things from me now but I’m not going to put pressure on myself.
“Last season was a good start. The manager gave me the chance to go out on the pitch and show what I can do but then my injury started kicking in and my performances weren’t the best. It was obviously taking a toll on me so the manager took me out to protect me.
Blessed with electric pace and a bagful of tricks, Sterling is not one to rest on his natural ability, and he is already looking at ways to improve his game.
Sterling added: “The game in the Premier League is obviously fast-paced so I’ll be looking to use my pace but also out-think defenders.
“I've got to mix my game up as well which means not always dribbling and taking a few less touches. Everyone can see I like running with the ball so that could make it easy for defenders to read me. That’s why I need to mix it up.”