Is Raheem Sterling set to unleash his potential?

In 2015 Manchester City spent $72 million on Liverpool youngster, Raheem Sterling, after two breakout seasons at Anfield. Sterling has spent the past two seasons trying to justify the hefty price tag to little conviction. As he heads into his third season at Etihad it’s time for him to breakout at Manchester City otherwise he could fall beneath the cracks and rue leaving the Merseyside club.

The Jamaican-born English international improved a lot under Pep Guardiola compared to his maiden 2015-16 season under Manuel Pellegrini, but his best season was in 2014-15. With Luis Suarez moving to Barcelona, Daniel Sturridge missing most of the season with injury, and Mario Balotelli failing to find consistency, Sterling had to take more responsibility in Liverpool’s attack. But in a side featuring the likes Sergio Aguero, Gabriel Jesus, Kevin de Bruyne, and Leroy Sane, the onus isn’t entirely on Sterling.

Below are the statistics from the 2014-15 season at Liverpool, and the 2016-17 season with Manchester City:

2014-15 with Liverpool

  • 35 matches
  • Seven goals
  • 84 shots
  • Seven assists, 75 chances created
  • 103 dribbles
  • 93 fouls won
  • 893 passes

2016-17 with Manchester City

  • 33 matches
  • Seven goals
  • 64 shots
  • Six assists, 46 chances created
  • 83 dribbles
  • 54 fouls won
  • 833 passes

As you can see he was a lot more involved in his second season at both clubs, and that is where the problem lies. His first full season at Liverpool wasn’t too bad but it wasn’t as good as his second, while the 2014-15 season, his first after signing with Manchester City was poor by the standards of a player worth $72 million.

2015-16 with Manchester City

  • 31 matches
  • Six goals
  • 52 shots
  • Two assists, 35 chances created
  • 41 dribbles
  • 53 fouls won
  • 721 passes

Sterling needs to find the consistency if he wants to stay in Guardiola’s first-team. In a very competitive side with a high turnover it’s important for Sterling to get in a groove and stay there… and probably spend less time and money on prostitutes.

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