Sterling Struggling for Country
Many international fans were keen to see if Manchester City players could carry their club form onto the international stage. The first England match, unfortunately, showed a lack of international quality from Raheem Sterling. Sterling, who had a stellar season for Manchester City, looked devoid of confidence and unwilling to take the ball forward.
He has just two goals for England so far, despite the fact he was given an opportunity by Lingard on a plate but failed to find his feet. In the Euros two years ago Raheem was heavily criticised as people feel he is wasteful and lacks a quality final pass. His performance against Tunisia was similar to his performances at the Euros and will need to improve.
This season whilst Sterling has been wasteful at times he has also scored many goals. To find himself a key player in a Guardiola side shows that he has ability.
Tattoo Criticism Needs to be Forgotten
In the lead up to the tournament Sterling’s choice of tattoo was discussed heavily and whether it encourages gun violence. The ex-Liverpool forward was performing at a good enough level this wouldn’t have mattered as fans tend to forgive other things as long as they are performing on the pitch.
Real Madrid fans hate the vanity/egocentrism of Ronaldo but will always forgive him due to his performances on the pitch. Sterling has stated that he feels unfairly treated by the media and the resentment may be due to the way he left Liverpool.
The Manchester City winger must forget the criticism and concentrate on performing well for England.
Rashford or Sterling?
Gareth Southgate will need to decide who starts against Panama. An impressive cameo by Marcus Rashford will see him pushing for more game time. Rashford looks much more settled in an England shirt and knows his worth.
Raheem may be feeling the pressure and seems to still doubt his own ability. Southgate will most likely persist with Sterling but the calls for him to be dropped may soon become too much.
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