A lot of bashing towards Raheem Sterling going on for last few days as it looks almost certain that he is going to leave Anfield this summer. Although his ambition to play for a better team (as per current stats) and a better wage is understandable but his attitude since the Manchester City placed their first bid is no way acceptable, especially at such young age.
The Liverpool supporters are not only disheartened but shocked how can a player, so young can show such attitude to push the club for transfer displaying no respect for the institution at all where he learnt the game, got opportunity and was introduced to the world football. They feel if being the best player for LFC last season is the reason that made Raheem so arrogant, then let him go and Liverpool do not need such playerswho are not willing to play for them. They are absolutely right but then, there can be another perspective to the whole incident.
2013 Summer Transfer Window – A certain Luis Suarez, the best player of Liverpool then, expressed his wish for a move following bids from Arsenal and other teams and we all know how things went. He stood emotionless after assisting the second goal in preseason game at Melbourne and then gave an interview to Marca to publicize his wish in spite of travelling to Oslo for a friendly.
Raheem Sterling was 18 only then. An age when every human being learns a lot, be it a footballer or anyone else. At 18, we get introduced to the world in all new way, learn values about life. There would be no wonder if Raheem had looked upon Suarez as an idol then and if so, these incidents were bound to affect him. It is quite natural for any kid who is in his late teen to get affected by everything his idol do, every way his idol behaves and every way his idol gets treated.
And then, what happened? Luis stayed, started firing goals once again and Liverpool supporters forgot everything to fall in love with him again. He became fan favorite within months. While all these happened, did somewhere the Liverpool supporters themselves passed a message to that kid unknowingly that if you perform, rest of the things hardly count? We forget about all the bitter moments very easily once you start scoring again?
If so, such things should leave a huge impact on an 18 year old and who knows this is not the case with Sterling?
If tomorrow Raheem asks this question, “Once Suarez did this and with time, you forgot everything and now you still praise him even after his departure. Then why should I find it wrong while doing something same like that?”
What will Liverpool supporters answer then?
It’s very often said footballers are very professional nowadays, emotions hardly count for them. But ain’t the supporters are responsible for that attitude too? At least, to some extend?
This article has written by Rajarshi Bhattacharya, a well-known footballer of FIIOB, and the coach of FIIOB Junos. If you have similar interest, you can drop an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to contribute.