23 Jan 2013

'He's a tank' - Sterling reveals the 'scariest' defender he's ever played against...

Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling is not the biggest player out there, and due to his size, he inevitably receives rough treatment at the hands of some of the Premier League's big units. The youngster is unfazed by the physicality of English football, but admits that there are certain players out there who are extremely tough to play against.

In an interview this week, Sterling - who is one of the most fouled players in the league - admitted that her 'gets kicked a lot', but insisted that 'If that's what it takes and we get free-kicks, I will take getting the kicks'.

That's an admirable stance, but who is the toughest player he's faced in the Premier League? According to Sterling, it's Chelsea's £9m defender Branislav Ivanovic. He told The Daily Mail:

“The scariest to play against was Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic. He wasn't dirty, the guy is just a tank! A big guy, big upper body, big lower body. A real tank"

Sterling accepts that the physicality is part of the game, and he seems to relish it:

"It's always happened, I've always played above my age group, with bigger guys, but I love the challenge. With the physicality, I had to learn new tricks, learn to outsmart my opponent"

In a recent Interview with The Mirror Sterling admitted that he supported Manchester United when he first moved to England. When asked about it, the 18-year old winger said:

"I need to keep that [supporting Manchester United] quiet!"

Sterling assured fans, however, that he's now a bona-fide Liverpool fan:

"When you start playing for a team, you immediately start supporting them because you want to do your best for your team and you always want them to do well".

Sterling is a good player, and he'll get better as the years go by, but I personally feel he's a little overrated, and from watching him perform, his style is such that he'll probably get found out by defenders sooner rather than later. Indeed, it could be argued that he's already been found out, which could explain his low goals/assists return.

Jaimie Kanwar

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59 comments:

  1. agree jaimie but hes still young and will hopefully keep improving he reminds me a bit of mark walters,hopefully he will be better than him

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  2. Greg | Liverpool Kopites1:42 pm, January 23, 2013

    He's been found out definitely, but imo, it's mainly because he doesn't take more risks. BR should encourage him to take on players more and try to get into more dangerous positions. Maybe study Barnes extensively.

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  3. He's just 18 and has a lot of work to do on his game. As soon as he is found out by defenders, he has to develop further and find new tricks to get past them. I personally find it difficult to say how good a player will be at such a young age. We might see more assist and bigger impacts from him now that he isn't overplayed anymore and can come on later in games. His pace alone will pose problems to most tiring defences.

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  4. Just like when Turner found him out for the assist on the weekend I suppose! It obvious he has been overplayed which has effected his displays, he should be used as a 17/18 player should be in there debut season..... sparingly!

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  5. I agree Jamie. If you watch the Brazilian league (Brasileirao) you'll find quite a few of 16-19 year old wingers who are much better than Sterling and are playing regularly. But Sterling did well to cement a 1st team place in the 1st place so kudos to him.

    Don't get me wrong...Sterling is a tidy little player but very overrated. I think BR was forced to play him as others around him were under performing. Then again we had Assaidi and he never got a chance.

    But credit where credit is due. He is still young. He reminds me of Shaun Wright Phillips because of his speed, technique and physique. If he can be the player Phillips was during the 04-05 season then we have got a very good player in our hands.
    Sterling should come off the bench for now and play in the UEFA and FA Cup. His latest appearances have been uninspiring par last sat. His play is IMO very simple and not complex enough for a winger. But he will improve, however we need a good winger that he can learn from.

    And I have seen Ivanovic play live and he is a big fella..so for someone of the size of Sterling it would daunting to say the least.

    All in all... Sterling will improve over the years but will need class wingers around him so he can learn from.

    Meanwhile I would play Borini-Sturridge-Suarez upfront.

    PS We should have a look at Bernard from Atl├ętico Mineiro.

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  6. I agree that he has kind of been found out by defenders or more likely managers. However he seems like an intelligent young player so hopefully he will adapt his game as time goes by. Let's remember hes just past halfway in his first season. 

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  7. Because of his pace and directness, he will always be some sort of threat in this league and no surprise that he has settled in a lot quicker than the more subtle Suso and his so-called continental style. Opposition may well do even better against Sterling in the future as they find out more about his game but pace & directness is a combination that will always cause problems sooner or later in a game in the PL. So he has his uses, regardless of the infancy of his game to date. Hasn't got the overall package yet and has to show more to his game to be good enough regularly for the first XI but that isn't unsurprising, considering his age. Inconsistency is par for the course at this stage in his development but as long as we have a small squad, we are going to have to put up with it. Done well so far for his senior debut season, regardless.

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  8. It's true he is young and like you said he will need to improve in the future to pose a threat.

    I think him being called up to the England squad was a joke personally. Maybe it was more due to politics.

    And Zaha too, he is so overrated.

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  9. Agreed. We should have played Assaidi more.

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  10. I don't even know how good Assaidi is or what his game is really like at LFC, that is how little has played! Maybe there are fitness issues or is not rated by Rodgers, hmm

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  11. Always seem to be abundance of talent in Brazil but not many wingers from there establish themselves in Europe. One thing playing in Brazil, another playing in the top leagues in Europe, let alone PL. So I think its a difficult thing comparing wingers in the Brazilian league where their flair is allowed to flourish, even though they always look exciting to watch over there I admit. A talent he is but my word, the refs give Neymar everything, down to the most minimal of contacts. 


    Although not a winger, Pato's star has faded big time. Cicinho, the next so-called Cafu he was hyped up as due to his exploits in Brazil but he turned out to be very ordinary. Mancini did great for two seasons (part of that wonderfully entertaining Roma side for a season, under Spalletti) but apart from that, faded. Need more than wing wizardry to do the business in Europe, you need the mentality also, which has been the big hurdle for Brazilians at times (not all of them but quite a few of them have succumbed to this problem). There aren't even that many established wingers in the Brazil squads in recent times. Not many Brazilians wide players with more than 10 caps to their name at the moment but maybe that is to do with the system Brazil play with at times. Only Moura has comfortably more than 10 and only recently moved to PSG, so early days as to how well he does in this part of the world, although when Inter and Man United are interested, he has to have something worthwhile right. To be fair, a few of them seem to be doing rather well over in Eastern Europe. Watched the Zenit Shakhtar friendly yesterday and Willian again looked good. I'm generally wary of getting excited with young Brazilian wide players for some reason, I admit. Flatter to deceive springs to mind.Of course, for PL clubs they have the work permit hurdle to contend with, which is why we don't bring in South Americans by the truckload like the Portuguese do. This post brings back a winger who seemed so great in Brazil, was bought for big money by Betis....Denilson. Ah Denilson, who remembers him. Flop he was but what a dribbler. His name brings back memories of WC 1998 airport advert, what a advert!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YePFGhCC7ro

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  12. I think we are expecting a bit too much too soon to be honest. I love this kid and am sure he is going to be brilliant in the future. A real star in the making imo. If you take Ronaldo as an example, look at his stats early in his career: 2002- 03 = 5 goals
                    2003- 04 = 6 goals
                    2004- 05 = 9 goals
                    2005- 06= 12 goals

    He was hardly setting the world alight at 17/18 and we all know how that turned out. I am not saying he is the next Ronaldo, just that expectations shouldn't be so high and lets give him the time he needs to develop his game before judging him. If you remember Ronaldos first year or so in England, there were a lot of tricks with very little end product but he learned. Onwards and upwards for young Sterling.

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  13. Good point about Ronaldo's development pattern. Although, imo, always obvious as to how much potential that he had from his first season at United, enormous potential (I am not saying that you have said something to the contrary). He wasn't polished or setting the world alight but he was also exciting, very for a young talent, the annoying falling on the ground aside. The same sort of buzz one gets from watching Neymar, etc. Don't get that same 'wonder what he will be like in x amount of years' buzz from Sterling but don't get me wrong, Sterling can be a very good player still and done well in his debut season. 

    Though Ferguson tends to indulge his wide players, i.e., allow them a level of freedom to take risks as wing play is important to him. Whereas maybe Rodgers is more restrained in that sense in terms of giving Sterling a certain level of individual freedom, in the current tactics especially, so that could play a part in Sterling's development and performances to a certain degree, not necessarily a negative thing. A manager's vision can have a impact on a player's development, regardless of potential and style of the player, imo. 

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  14. The English national team is in desperate need for a injection of players of real talent, me thinks.

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  15. 'overrated'....that is British players for you ;)

    Re: Sterling call up. I regard it as more desperation and a sign of depth, as its time to try something new and the pool of English talent is small. The alternatives were hardly any better.

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  16. I think it was also to make him choose England over Jamica

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  17. Though I think he is still eligible to play for Jamaica, until he plays a competitive game for England. But of course, his initial cap may well help England's case to tying his long term commitment to England.

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  18. I don't expect him to reach Ronaldos level either but I think he is better than Walcott for example at that age, seems brighter on the ball to me. As you say, a lot of it does depend on the manager and how they handle them from such a young age but it appears as though people are expecting a fair amount of goals and assists this season which I feel is a bit unrealistic at his age. Taking Walcott as the example, he only seems to have matured in the last year or so in terms of composure. I reckon Sterling will be better by the time he gets to Walcotts age. Very excited about seeing him develop. Am just happy to see a lot of potential at his age and hope that he develops into the top star that we all hope.

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  19. sorry m8 not borini sterling will have more assists and goals than him at the end of the season

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  20. there were rumors prior to him leaving for the african cup of nations that the biggest reason that he doesn't play is cause he doesn't really track back enough and hes not positionally aware but from what i seen he looks quality

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  21. Just a pity we didn't get our hands on Walcott when he was having his contract dispute. Would have been the perfect time to get him now that he is showing the signs of fulfilling his potential. Always agreed with Hansen about his lack of game intelligence until this season.

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  22. His crossing is still nothing to write home about, imo. Just not got it in his locker to be a consistently good permanent wide player, imo. Not got the brains behind the pace to consistently cause damage on the wing. Chelsea game, he was leaving it mostly to Sagna to provide the crossing out wide, who was having a stinker anyway. He is decent at doing the pull back when inside the byline of the penalty box but when he is out wider (outside of the box) nearer the touchline, his wing play is poor. Not one of those that can hold/tease a full back from standing positions out wide and get a good meaningful cross in. He is not a natural wide player. This season he has been given a fair bit of time in the middle and is showing some good consistent stuff. 

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  23. Helps that he has been given quite a bit of time in a central role this season. He doesn't have the game intelligence to be a consistent threat as a wide player and most likely, will never do so. But pace is pace and in this league, it is potent at times.

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  24. sterling needs to start banging goals in 

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  25. thats what i was saying sterling as miles more more game intelligence than walcott at the same age walcott shoot when he should have craossed and visa versa i agree walcott would have been ok but i would not have wanted to pay a big fee for him

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  26. Jaimie,

    Poor very poor coming from considering he's 18 years old.
    If Sterling is found out then whats Downing?

    In fact I defy any or you to name a 18 year old attacker whose doing better in the Premier League.....YOU CAN'T SHUT UP ...SIT DOWN AND WAIT.

    Worst article you've done in long time ....JAIMIE 

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  27. Yeah your right to be honest. Most Brazilian wingers have flopped as in Brasil they are given a lot of space to run at defenders. Interesting though, I always wonder why some leagues are harder than others?

    Sterling will develop for sure!

    I remember Cicinho well! But he faded away as well. Brasilian wide players are most wing backs because Brasilian teams do not play with wingers, rather wings backs.

    AH Denilson!!!!!!!!!!! So much pontential!

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  28. To be honest if Ronaldo came to Liverpool instead of United IMO he would not have developed the way he did.

    A manager's vision, like you said, has a lot do with their development.

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  29. I think Walcott was hyped wwwaaayyyyy too much! He was a good prospect yes but that was all he was. I still can't believe we went to WC06!

    Walcott shows flashes of brilliance but far to inconsistent. Maybe playing up front will help him.

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  30. Yep, always wondered how he would have developed under Houllier or at Arsenal, with Wenger. Wenger has a certain playing philosophty, especially in the last few years with the 'young project', not sure how Ronaldo would have done in such a pass-pass-pass environment. Ferguson gave Ronaldo a lot of freedom in his latter seasons (false nine role, wide forward role, little tracking backing, etc) and he developed into the goal scoring monster he is today. Nani for a 12-18 month period I think was averaging a goal/assist almost every single game, if not more. Again, imo, a result of Ferguson's focus on wing play. There was that clip of Rodgers telling Sterling to stop messing about or something like that wasn't there? Maybe one can't read too much into that, in relation to how Rodgers wants him to play.

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  31. Finally some sanity when it comes to sterling. Very overrated. The boy provides very little end product and doesn't get to the line or get the Bol into dangerous areas. I think he has been found out already and Liverpool would. E wise to cash in on this one. I always feel like we're playing a man down when he starts. Impact player off the bench at best.

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  32. maybe not 18 but there are a lot of young attackers in the prem oscar ,welbeck'chamberlain,age is not importantits a factor but skill is the biggest factor

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  33. Is expecting a player to maintain possession to much to ask these days. Gives it up to much. Can't get around his man on the outside and can't deliver a direct pass. Off the bench maybe but that's all he will be.

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  34. Romelu Lukakau, who is 19, begs to differ.

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  35. bit harsh i think m8 hes still young and its up to him to develop his game

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  36. So Sterling has no SKILL ? Downing has ? Wellbeck is more skillful (but he's a striker). Chameberlain?...The only thinh they have in common is there SKIN TONE . Queue the usual  every Black player that comes in is not JOHN BARNES comments. I've seen it a thousand times it's lazy.
    I'm right there are no players in the prem at 18 with Sterlings ability and IF YOU ALL DOUBT IT put him up for sale and see who bids.
    Honestly some of you on here make me sick 

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  37. He's 19 and he's a STRIKER ...wow keep trying

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  38. get off your high horse, and skin tone as nothing to do with it.and were did i say i would sell him i was just giving an example of other young players in the prem,maybe i should have put a white player in there so has not to have come across as being racist,by some people with a chip on there shoulders

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  39. load of rubbish, hes been over used and his form has dipped because of that. one main thing you missed out to his credit is that he can actually skin a player. if you dont understand that means beat a player.
    i think you will find he has a few assists at least.
    so check your facts and show some respect for a young brave talent

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  40. because were blessed with so many left wingers for england..........geeeeeeezzz !!!you people !!!!

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  41. great little player with bags of potential, was a breath of fresh air when he got his first debut, have some you already forgotten where we were and where we are now. sterling is our future and were lucky to have him.
    he can only get better.
    he will go to the next world cup or euro and will probably do well, jo cole was our last best left winger!!!
    end product will get better and the main thing is his feet are firmly on the ground

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  42. The guy has just turnded 18 and hes been 'found out'? you can't be found out if you have not even fully developed yet
     

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  43. Seems as though Ive rattled your cage. He hasn't been over played and I believe his form has dipped due to the opposition understanding his weakness. To help you out here let me point out that defenders are giving him the outside lane and he can't take them that way or cross the ball with his left foot. He has become in effective. You can make all the excuses you want for him but it won't result in him maintaining possession. When he does check inside he over runs the ball 90% of the time. I think he will get better at Liverpool but will never be worthy of the hype that surrounds him or a starting spot in the team. As per your comment about checking facts. I will leave it to you to post his pass completion percentage... Seeing as you know all the facts.

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  44. The fact is because he was jamaican, a winger, and black people assumed John Barnes. But if u compare any 18 year old to John Barnes then yes they "will be found out"!

    His weakeness is his end product but that will come with time. He has been overused, sometimes played twice in one week and over time it will have taken its toll. So no he isnt as good as the initial hype and neither is he as bad as some people are making out.

     

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  45. LFC also have 1 jet fighter....Sebastian Coates and 1 player can speed like scud, Oussama Assaidi but B.Rodgers dislike to used this weapon. They can be like a special secret weapon for LFC.

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  46. Is Suarez still the most fouled player in the premier league? He was the last time I checked. 

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  47. Your still knob and WE all know your a proxy Manchester pigeon eater

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  48. Sterling is young and will definitely improve ,unfortunately for a young guy he has been good when he has played,in an ideal world he would have been playing only as an impact player not playing week in week out.

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  49. who said you were racist ?.....give it up jason 

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  50. so why bring skin colour into it

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  51. Hold up,
    Who mentioned those players ?
    What have they all got in common?
    Go on tell me it was a coincidence Jason.

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  52. you jump to your own conclutsons like you did on the original post,

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  53.  the post stated Sterling was found out ..it's wrong and so are you

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  54. i think if you read your original reply to me it suggest something about skin colour and i make you sick,and yes it was complete coincidence 

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  55. U used only black players

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  56. i used the good young attacking players i could think of at the time i did not think what colour they where

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  57. then you went on to quote at least 4 of them who just happened to be black ..just a coincidence  We going in circles Jason and your not going to get the last word give it up 

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  58. i dont want the last word its not me with a chip on there shoulder ,i just said you insinuated i was racist,when infact imo its you who has a problem with the race issue

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