According to the Times, while Manchester City plot and prepare their £40M opening offer for Liverpool’s want-away young star Raheem Sterling, they have been beaten to the punch by neighbours Manchester United when it comes to actually making the first move. It’s either bold or bush league by United, who will have known going in there is no way that Liverpool would sell to their historical rivals.
Particularly in the case of Sterling, the most promising and highly regarded young English player, it is unfathomable that Liverpool would even entertain a sale to United—at any price. And to be fair to United, they will have launched their inquiry into Sterling’s status in the full knowledge of that, less concerned with whether or not they might be able to actually land the player than if they could perhaps further unsettle Sterling and Liverpool.
As reported by Tony Barrett, the inquiry to gauge Sterling’s availability and what it might take for United to get him was rebuffed immediately by Liverpool, who made it clear that they would not entertain further offers from Louis van Gaal’s side for Sterling or any other player. That, though, will hardly matter to United, who surely have already achieved what they would have hoped to by approaching Liverpool about the 20-year-old.
Having ended last season hoping that they were finally back on the right track, finishing second in the league after five years spent outside the Champions League places, the 2014-15 season has been something of a crashing to earth for Liverpool. Things only appear to be getting worse as the season ends and the club prepare for another summer of uncertainty and drama. United today have done their best to add to that.