Despite a recent injury, Raheem Sterling will undeniably soon be back to his very best at such an important stage in his career.
But it’s just as important a stage off it, with rumours linking him with a move away from English football.
After 11 league goals last season, Sterling has already managed the same amount this time around. A hamstring injury has ruled him out of action over the past few weeks. But the winger returned to the side in Wednesday’s Champions League round of 16 first leg tie at Real Madrid.
Before that encounter, the attacker had managed ten goals in his last 13 UCL appearances, one more than in his previous 34 games in the competition. He’s got five goals and two assists in this season’s tournament.
The England international has a big summer ahead, both in terms of club football and internationally. He will unquestionably be one of the first names on the team sheet for Gareth Southgate at Euro 2020. And if his previous international experience is anything to go by, Sterling will once again play a key role.
The nation will meet Croatia, Czech Republic and the winners of a play-off path that includes Scotland, Israel, Serbia and Norway. All three group games take place at Wembley.
But the likes of Madrid, Juventus and even Chelsea are reportedly keen on his signature as they look to persuade him to leave Manchester.
Several other top European sides will also be eyeing the 25-year-old, should he make the decision to leave the Etihad at the end of the current campaign. And that decision will undoubtedly centre around City’s impending Champions League ban.
Like Sterling, numerous players at the club have been linked with a move away. Even manager Pep Guardiola could be on the move. But the Spaniard has already stated his intentions of staying in charge.
But the same cannot be said for his players. The likes of Kevin De Bruyne and Sergio Aguero may not want to hang around Manchester if the club are kept out of Europe’s premier competition. And the England attacker could well be in the same position come the summer.
Sterling is currently 7/1 to sign for Real Madrid in the upcoming transfer window.
The winger is available at 16/1 and 25/1 to join either PSG or Juventus respectively. Bayern Munich are also 25/1 to snap up Sterling next. And it’s 33/1 for the City star to make the short trip to London and sign with Chelsea.
It’s also 33/1 for the forward to be a Barcelona player by 1st September 2020. Arsenal and Manchester United are 50/1 and 66/1 respectively to lure Sterling into a Premier League switch.
And finally it’s 100/1 for Liverpool to bring back their once-loved youngster.