For most Liverpool fans, the World Cup experience involves having the club linked to a few standout performers. Liverpool are in need of a left back and Daley Blind has had a standout performance against Spain? Link him. Liverpool have been rumoured to be looking at goalkeepers? Oh hey, there's Guillermo Ochoa fresh off a Man of the Match showing against Brazil.
What happens less often is for fans of the club to have it the other way around—to have it be a lesser known Liverpool player grabbing the headlines and all of a sudden being linked with a move away. Enter Raheem Sterling and annual transfer market villains Real Madrid, who have now been made aware of the attacker's existence and have added him to their big list of transfer targets.
Sterling is hardly a revelatory World Cup standout for anyone who's been paying attention to Liverpool, but maybe none of Real Madrid's football men managed to stumble across a match last season. They apparently managed to catch England's match against Italy, though, where Sterling was the standout player on the pitch in a losing effort. So now they want him.
The good news for Liverpool fans is they won't have to worry about that until next summer, as that's supposedly when Madrid want him. Which really just makes the whole thing laughable, rumour mongers trying to have their cake and eat it too by managing to link a breakout star everyone knows isn't going anywhere right now to a maybe who knows down the road kind of transfer deal.
It's hilarious. It's transparent. It's a rumour that admits that even in transfer silly season nobody on earth would believe a Raheem Sterling to Madrid this summer rumour but based on his standout performance against Italy there has to be some way of getting some rumour mongering mileage out of him. Still, there you have it. Madrid want Sterling. In the future. Maybe.