LONDON: Liverpool’s England forward Raheem Sterling has denied that he is a “money-grabbing 20-year-old” but an interview about the state of his contract talks appears to have backfired spectacularly.
Sterling has rejected what manager Brendan Rodgers described as an “incredible offer” – believed to be £100,000-a-week – as the club look to tie down one of their prize assets who has two years remaining on his current £35,000-a-week contract.
Later Rodgers said that Sterling had not had permission to talk publicly about the contract issue.
However Sterling, in an interview with the BBC, said he did not want to consider an extension until the season’s end which Liverpool will inevitably come under pressure to sell a massive talent whose value will only fall during the last year of his contract.
Sterling said: “I don’t want to be perceived as a money-grabbing 20-year-old. I just want to be seen as a kid that loves to play football.
“Money is not everything in my life. I’ve got family, a daughter – these people mean everything to me.
“Anyone around me can vouch for me that it has never been about money. It is about winning trophies throughout your career; I don’t talk about how many cars I will drive or how many houses I’ve got.
“It is flattering to get a huge contract (offer). I just purely want to be the best I can be.
“I want to be seen as the one who wants to do best for the team and I don’t want the fans to think bad of me, to think I just want as much money for myself.
“It has been a bit much for me this season with everyone talking about it every minute.
“I just want to get through this season helping the club do the best we can do and hopefully at the end of the season be proud of what we have achieved.”