Brendan Rodgers is hopeful Raheem Sterling’s contract situation at Liverpool will be resolved in the summer. The Reds manager feels the forward will be best served by remaining at Anfield and developing his career with the club for whom he has been a player since leaving QPR’s academy as a 16-year-old. Any talks over an extension to Sterling’s contract, which is due to expire in the summer of 2017, have been put on hold until the summer, with rumours circulating that the player is reluctant to agree to an initial offer which would put him on more than £100,000-per-week.
Rodgers is adamant that he will not sell Sterling in the summer transfer window and believes he will find a solution during that period. “At 20 years of age – and just turned 20 in December – there is still a long way for him to go,” said the Reds boss. “This is a young kid that’s been advised to do something else and he just wants to play football. “For now the focus has to be on his football and continuing his development with us. He has got a lot of potential. I believe that potential he can really develop over these next few years at Liverpool. “Of course, it will be the job of, in particular, his advisors to look at maybe what possibilities might be beyond that. “The only thing I will say is that he has two-and-a-half years left, he won’t be going anywhere in the summer. That’s for sure. “They will sit down again with the club and his representatives to hopefully find the solution in the summer.” Sterling and his Liverpool team-mates were consigned to a second consecutive Premier League defeat this weekend, going down 4-1 to Arsenal, who recorded their seventh win on the bounce in style at the Emirates Stadium. He was, however, involved in the only positive piece of play for the Reds, winning the penalty from which Jordan Henderson at least got them on the scoresheet. Rodgers did not feel the very public discussions over Sterling’s future had affected him. “There was no change in him,” he said. “I thought he was excellent today, our best player. “He was aggressive in his running, pressed the ball well, won the penalty and was very direct and strong, so I thought he was excellent today.” Questions about Sterling dominated Rodgers’ post-match press conference at Arsenal, during which he said “a big part of this is actually nothing to do with him”.