Raheem Sterling scored a fine goal against an accommodating Newcastle on Monday evening but has been the subject of regular speculation about his future after turning down a contract extension in December. His unauthorised interview with the BBC, rumblings about the influence of his agent Aidy Ward, transfer rumours focused on potential destinations in the summer, transfer tribunal calculations and speculation, and concerns about Liverpool's ambition have made the who affair quite the draw for discussion.
Any noise surrounding the Golden Boy increased after revelations (better choose your friends wisely Liverpool fledglings) that he used shisha pipes and enjoyed the highs to be experienced from nitrous oxide. All perfectly legal but not quite advisable for a young sportsman with supposedly bright prospects. The twist came in the presence of fellow pup Jordon Ibe enjoying the company of his pal Sterling and smoking shisha. While these are youthful mistakes, it'd be best if there weren't any more pictures, videos, or interviews released between now and the end of May.
Only strong words will be had with the 8 December birthday boys as opposed to fines and first flights back to Queens Park Rangers and West Bromwich Albion. Jordon Ibe's future with the club seems secure with expectations that he will sign a new long-term deal at some stage soon. Ian Ayre, as expected, maintained the club's position on Raheem Sterling's future.
Raheem’s agent has asked that we park all discussions regards his future until the summer. Raheem is a Liverpool player and has over two years left on his contract. We expect Raheem Sterling to be here for a long time.
That's been the line the club have taken since negotiations broke down/were put off after failing to come to an agreement with Sterling's representatives. Brendan Rodgers, Tom Werner, and Ian Ayre have all expressed a firm belief that Sterling will stay at Liverpool beyond the summer. Presumably John Henry won't entertain Liverpool selling the player so easily or cheaply if a compromise with Sterling's camp cannot be reached. FSG have shown with Luis Suárez that the ownership will reward players highly to reflect their performances on the pitch and will generally sell on the club's terms. That won't change whatever happens with Sterling beyond the end of this season.