Over the summer, once Luis Suarez was gone and there were no more big rumours linking Liverpool players away left to monger, some less than reputable outlets with no link to the clubs involved had the brilliant idea to begin dealing in futures. Namely Raheem Sterling's future, as though it was too soon to believably link the youngster with a move away this just past summer, his prodigious talent meant some time down the road it would be, so why not get the ball rolling?
With England likely off the table when it came to potential future destinations and Liverpool having just wrapped up their dealings with Barcelona, the only real answer could be Real Madrid. And so it was that Sterling to Real Madrid next summer—or maybe the summer after that but seriously guys they totally want him and will try to get him one of these summers—became a thing. Now the fine folks at the Mirror have done their bit to bring it back for a September encore.
The story's revival, which again is not brought to the world by anyone with links to either club, has since begun to be regurgitated elsewhere. This time around, it's based almost entirely around the fact that the club haven't signed Sterling to a new deal yet despite that it had been rumoured over the summer that they were working towards one. As that means that Sterling is currently the lowest paid Liverpool and England regular, Real Madrid are stepping up their interest in him.
Probably. It's all entirely speculative, but hey, Sterling hasn't signed a new deal yet and Real Madrid like good players so why not. Except that Sterling's still only 19 years of age and, as good as he is, would struggle to see regular minutes in Madrid in the short term. He also has three years left on his current deal, so while Liverpool might like to get him a new one that ties him down for longer, it's not as though he'll head into next summer with only a year left on his contract.
Sterling to Madrid, or at least being legitimately linked to them, may be something Liverpool fans have to deal with eventually. It probably will be if he becomes as good as it seems he might. For now, though, it's just hack rumour mongers trying to capture eyeballs and fill column inches in the transfer offseason by reviving an old rumour despite a complete lack of any new information that might support it. But it could happen. Some day.