Raheem Sterling says he ‘doesn’t mind’ being criticised for failing to turn up in big games for Manchester City.
The £49m man has scored 11 goals this season since his move from Liverpool but has only scored Premier League goals against Watford, Bournemouth, Sunderland and now Aston Villa.
It has led to accusations that Sterling is a flat-track bully but the City winger is happy to take the criticism.
“That’s a good thing, I don’t mind that. As long as I’m helping my team I am happy – if I’m not doing that people are entitled to criticise me,” says the England man.
“That’s the enjoyment of being a footballer. I look forward to the big games and hopefully I can score a few more in those big games.
“As long as it’s the big game pressure I am getting stick for, I don’t mind it.”
Sterling has admitted that he is not happy with his goal return so far this season, saying: “I have been working on my finishing – it’s something I want to do. I could say a lot more on that, but I won’t say what I want to say.
“It  isn’t near my target. But it’s a personal target. Villa was the kind of game where you go out and always try to score, and if you don’t you are a bit disappointed in yourself.”