Sterling: I'll play anywhere

Raheem Sterling says he is happy to play anywhere as the ‘Wayne Rooney question’ continues to dog England.

Last Updated: 24/06/14 at 18:41 Post Comment

Raheem Sterling: England man happy to play anywhere for the team

Raheem Sterling: England man happy to play anywhere for the team

Sterling played in a central attacking position in the 2-1 defeat to Italy in the World Cup Group D opener and was generally acknowledged as the best England player on the night.

Rooney was deployed down the left, and although he set up Daniel Sturridge for England’s goal, many feel his best position would just behind the striker.

Boss Roy Hodgson therefore has a difficult selection decision ahead of Thursday’s crunch clash with Uruguay in Sao Paulo.

Sterling says he would be more than happy to move to accommodate Rooney, who has not tried to hide his irritation with the media for focusing on his performance and the debate over where - or indeed if - he should play.

"I would be happy to play anywhere the manager puts me," Sterling said. "I am a team player. I will be working for the team regardless of which position I play in.

"I don't think the team was built around me necessarily. I just think the manager thought that was the right position for me at the time, with my pressing and my closing down."

Sterling grew up in the shadow of Wembley Stadium and he admits he has been dreaming about playing for England since he was a little boy.

He now has a tattoo of a boy wearing 10 playing under the famous arch and Sterling says it symbolises the childhood dream he is now experiencing in real life.

"I grew up five minutes from the stadium," Sterling said. "I used to ride my bike round this little car park that was by the stadium.

"I used to say to myself 'one day, I'd like to play there, hopefully I could do that' and I am really grateful to be given that opportunity.

"I know there have been some great players who have played for this country so for me to be selected in the national team was a great achievement for me."

Sterling was happy with his performance at the Arena Amazonia and now he wants to put on another dazzling show in Sao Paulo on Thursday.

"It was a big occasion for me - my first competitive start, so I tried to think of it as just another game and give it my best shot," he said.

"It wasn't enough at the end of the day but the team did some really impressive stuff and we will go out on Thursday ready to go again."

Italy, as usual, were tough to break down, with Daniele De Rossi and Andrea Pirlo patrolling in front of a grizzled back four.

Uruguay, on the other hand, have a defence that contains Diego Lugano, who has just been released by West Brom.

"We have been looking at them, trying to find ways in which we can really hurt them and I think the manager has been preparing really well for this game," Sterling said.

Suarez has declared himself fit following a knee injury, but Sterling was hoping his Liverpool team-mate would not feature.

"I'd rather not see him on the pitch, really," Sterling said with a smile. "He is a great player, we all know that. But we can't be too focused on just him. We've got to realise they've got other world-class players as well, like Cavani.

"We've really got to think about their positives and negatives, not just Luis."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

t's why Mourinho is so successful. He gives players a specific, limited set of functions to perform. They are but a cog in a machine. Do no more, do no less. I assume he learnt it from LvG :)

red_devil83
Fellaini Has Politely Become Undroppable

I

really hope that someone in the mainstream media spots that the Bayern manager played for and managed Barcelona quite well, and thinks to mention it in the build up. That would be really interesting.

megabrow (cufc)
Barcelona to face Bayern

Y

our gob says one thing, Brendan, the results say something else.

balls-to-monty
Rodgers bullish over Anfield future

Footer 365

League Two round-up: Tranmere and Cheltenham relegated to Conference

Shrewsbury secured promotion to League One by beating Cheltenham, whose relegation fate was sealed along with Tranmere.

Man City 3-2 Aston Villa: Brad Guzan drops howler before Fernandinho strikes late as City go second

Fernandinho struck in the 89th minute to hand Manchester City a dramatic 3-2 victory over Aston Villa in the Premier League.

League One round-up: Preston forced to wait for promotion party

Preston took a huge step towards promotion with a 3-0 win over Swindon, but MK Dons kept up the pressure with a victory.

Mail Box

Chelsea Millions Should Buy Better...

For the money they have spent, Chelsea should be playing like the Harlem Globetrotters rather than Atletico. We have mails on Cesc, Brendan Rodgers and...

Brendan Rodgers Is David Cameron...

Rodgers is compared to the Prime Minister, insomuch as he has a right to peddle bulls**t, apparently. Plus why comparing Arsene Wenger to Diego Simeone is a mug's game...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company