These Liverpool contract rebels don’t like to make things easier on themselves do they?
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Raheem Sterling has taken a swipe back at the fans who have been berating him in recent weeks, claiming that their taunts and shouts don’t bother him.
A disgruntled Sterling told journalists, reported in the Daily Mirror : “Everyone has their opinion on me at this moment in time but I’m just a kid who loves to play football and to try and improve every day and be the best I can be.
“It just goes in one ear and goes out the other. I don’t read anything, don’t look at anything and, for me, it’s all football. I’m genuinely focused on doing my best for this football club.”
Despite his many successes on Merseyside, the 20-year-old has visibly angered the Anfield faithful with his antics, including his rejection of a new long-term deal believed to be worth around treble what he currently earns.
As the Daily Mirror reports, his unwillingness to put pen to paper on a new contract has attracted the interest of Arsenal, Manchester City, Chelsea and Real Madrid, much to the frustration of everyone else involved.
The news came at the worst possible time for the Reds, for whom Sterling’s constant back-page headlines must have been a distraction as our pursuit of a top four spot began to hot up earlier this year.
Sterling is quick to claim that the ongoing saga has not affected his form, although his recent record of just one goal in his last ten Liverpool games suggests otherwise.
He added: “I set targets for myself at the start of the season and I’m probably a few goals behind where I wanted to be.
“I’m just taking it in my stride and hopefully in these last few games, the run-in until the end of the season, I can kick on again. I’m still learning and developing so only time will tell.
“I’m my own biggest critic. I don’t need anyone to tell me when I’ve played badly. I know when I’ve done bad, I’m always looking where I could have done better or scored an extra goal.
“This is the world that we live in. You look at the players like Ronaldo and these players are critical on themselves. These are the people that you need to idolise and look up to.
“It’s fallen really nicely for me to play at the highest level. From when I signed at Liverpool as a 14 or 15 year old boy, it was my dream to be at Anfield and I was not going anywhere until I’d done that.
“Last season was a great season for everyone at this football club. Obviously we didn’t start the season as well as we would have liked, we’ve definitely shown qualities and the manager has shown us stats from the start of the year and we’ve probably been one of the better teams in the league.”