Rodgers: Give youngsters time

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers feels youngsters such as Raheem Sterling may have been fast-tracked by England too early.

Last Updated: 13/11/13 at 12:25 Post Comment

Brendan Rodgers: Aware of the need to handle players of promise with care

Brendan Rodgers: Aware of the need to handle players of promise with care

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Rodgers is delighted to see players at his disposal earning international recognition, but has urged caution when it comes to asking for too much, too soon.

Sterling was drafted into the senior England squad last season shortly after making the breakthrough at Anfield.

The promising winger was just 17 at the time and had little Premier League experience of which to speak.

An outing in a friendly against Sweden remains his only cap to date, with Sterling having been returned to the U21 ranks in an effort to aid his future development and allow him to be handled with care at club level by Rodgers.

The Reds manager said in the Daily Express: "At that point in time he was one of the best young players in the country and he went into that game and actually did well.

"But it is about managing expectations - that is the biggest thing with a young player. You have to be so careful because there are so many young players in the country who get a cap and then are forgotten about.

"It can cause issues. It hasn't as such, but I'm talking about young players here and not just Raheem.

"If they get projected into the international teams too early there can be a misplaced belief that they are considered 'international players' when sometimes the circumstances dictate that."

Rodgers added on the progress being made by Sterling: "He showed over the first six months of last season that he has a future in the Premier League and at Liverpool.

"It was going to be very difficult to maintain the level that he set himself, but he is only 18 years of age and as much as we want to play young players and give them the opportunity, there is a nurturing phase as well.

"We have to be careful and avoid what has probably happened too often over the years in football and discard young players too early. I don't need them ready at 17. If they are, great, but certainly at 20 or 21, we would love them to be ready.

"England are looking to get the best young players in and, at the time, he was one of the best young players. We just have to make sure we remember his age and at what point he is at in his career and make sure we don't waste it.

"For Raheem, football has to be very much at the forefront of his mind. If it is, he is a talent."

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

M

eanwhile, England's best U21 players playing with those most likely to be in the senior team from 2020 onwards might increase their chances in those tournaments to a point where they could actually be potential winners. Unlike 2016.

shagwa
Wenger warns Hodgson

I

m not a doctor, but the cause is likely to be crap dancing after scoring. My prognosis is we may need to take that leg off.

GVMUFC
Rodgers reveals Sturridge woe

F

or the time being we just have to focus on the players we do have, Rodgers said. We have to make the best of what is available. Jesus wept!

rodger's gusset
Rodgers reveals Sturridge woe

Footer 365

Premier League: Tottenham's Christian Eriksen secures dramatic win at Hull

Christian Eriksen snatched a late winner as Tottenham fought back to claim a 2-1 victory over 10-man Hull.

Premier League: Crystal Palace come from behind to stun Liverpool

Liverpool endured another forgettable afternoon at Selhurst Park on Sunday as they were beaten 3-1 by Crystal Palace.

Premier League: Tottenham's Mauricio Pochettino disagreed with Hull boss Steve Bruce on red card

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino disagreed with Hull boss Steve Bruce's opinion on Gaston Ramirez's red card.

Mail Box

Oh Arsenal. Why Oh Why Oh Effing Why?

We have plenty of fallout from Arsenal's latest display of outrageous incompetence, plus the question of why every team seems to be getting worse. Plus, another Garcia ghost goal...

A Funny Mail About Line Dancing & More

We have some great responses to young Jack's question about how readers first got into football. Plus, finally some intelligent thoughts on Dave Whelan's outburst...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property