England star Raheem Sterling is said to be ‘open’ to an exit from Manchester City, the club said to be willing to ‘consider’ letting him go.
The 26-year-old is currently in fine form having netted three times during England’s Euro 2020 campaign, the winger having started all five games at the tournament thus far with a semi-final clash to come against Denmark at Wembley on Wednesday evening.
Those impressive showings have come off the back of a frustrating campaign for the former Liverpool man at the Etihad, following a lack of game time under Pep Guardiola in the second half of the season, with Three Lions teammate Phil Foden ousting him from his starting berth in the Man City side.
While Sterling was somewhat surprisingly handed a start in the Champions League final defeat to Chelsea at the end of May, there remain doubts as to both his importance to the club, but also his desire to remain there.
As per The Athletic, the forward is seemingly ‘open to a move if a good opportunity comes along’, while City would also ‘consider letting him go’ amid uncertainty over whether he will commit to a new deal.
Sterling’s current contract is set to expire in two years time, meaning that Sterling’s value to the club is now at a peak, and they could opt to cash in on him now rather than see his value dwindle before potentially leave for nothing in 2023.
There is also no doubting that the player’s stock will be on the rise this summer following his impressive England displays, a factor that will not only raise interest in his services, but also potentially raise the asking price.
The winger has been a key feature of Guardiola’s side in recent years, having netted 65 Premier League goals across the last four seasons, although the report claims that Sterling has ‘fallen out’ with the former Barcelona back in April.
While Guardiola would still wish for the player to stay despite the fractious personal relationship, should Sterling wish to leave, the club may be willing to cash in in order to raise funds for potential transfers.
The champions have been heavily linked with £100m deals for both Harry Kane and Jack Grealish this summer, while the likes of Gabriel Jesus, Bernardo Silva, Riyad Mahrez and Sterling have all been mentioned as names who could potentially be sold in order to bolster the transfer kitty.
There does however seem to be a genuine lack of destinations for the forward given the state of football’s current finances.
There has been a suggestion that the latter man could be used as a makeweight in a deal for international colleague Kane, although it would seemingly be a surprise to see him trade the Premier League title winners for a side who won’t even be playing Europa League football next term.
Sterling has previously been linked with a potential move to Real Madrid, having spoken of his interest in possibly playing abroad at some stage in his career, though the La Liga side aren’t exactly flush with cash at the moment given the effects of the pandemic and the redevelopment of the Bernabeu.
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Author: Robbie Walls