EPL

Sterling: Bernardo Silva arrival transformed my Manchester City career

By Sports Desk May 17, 2019

Raheem Sterling pinpointed the arrival of Bernardo Silva as a "massive turning point" in his Manchester City career. 

The England international has a combined 56 goals and assists in the Premier League over the past two campaigns, compared to 21 during his first two seasons at the Etihad Stadium.

Sterling puts his improvement down to the signing of Silva from Monaco in May 2017 for a reported £43million, admitting the addition of another wide player forced him to raise his game.

He told The Mirror: "I went back to north-west London. I went to see my friend and he said, 'They've just bought Bernardo Silva.' He was worried for me. And I was saying, 'That's sick, man.' He was really surprised but I thought, 'It's good, it's competition and it brings out the best in me.'

"That was a massive turning point when the wingers came in to push me. It was a good thing.

"At the time, it was only me and Leroy [Sane] and I just knew that it would push me again to do better because I knew there was someone else there. When you're in a team, it's not about ego, it's about raising your game to help the team.

"People had started to doubt me and I began to doubt myself as well and believe what was being said. It wasn't about getting my belief back, but I kind of blocked people out. I was like, 'OK, no problem, I'll show you.'"

Sterling was voted the Football Writers' Association Footballer of the Year for 2018-19 and was named in the PFA Team of the Year alongside team-mate Silva.

Off the field, meanwhile, the 24-year-old has been hailed as a role model for speaking out on racism and questioning the media's part in the problem.

But Sterling insists he does not see it that way, even if it makes his mother proud.

"People keep saying that," he said. "I don't want to say role model because I don't see myself as one.

"It gives my mum pride, I'll tell you that.

"I don't think I've changed anything, but I've opened up a door for work to be done. That's what I love about this country. People are always listening, people want to do the right thing and I definitely see it as something that has done positively.

"I adore this country because the people here are so loving and so willing to listen to try and do things for the better."

Related items

  • Richarlison encourages Neres to make Everton move Richarlison encourages Neres to make Everton move

    Richarlison has told Brazil team-mate and Ajax star David Neres to join him at Everton.

    Eredivisie champions Ajax face a fight to keep hold of winger Neres, 22, after an excellent season won him admirers across Europe.

    Neres scored crucial Champions League goals against Real Madrid and Juventus en route to the semi-finals and is reportedly on Arsenal's transfer radar.

    Everton, however, are believed to be the frontrunners for his signature and Richarlison wants his compatriot to make the move to Goodison Park.

    "I've spoken to him about it already," Richarlison told the Liverpool Echo in the aftermath of Brazil's win over Bolivia at the Copa America, in which both players started.

    "I told him the doors are open for him there, and that he could help us a lot.

    "I hope he comes. He'd be very welcome there. I've known him since we played together for Brazil Under-20 side, and he's a guy I get along with really well.

    "Hopefully I'll see him there."

    With 23 domestic goals in the past two campaigns, Neres appears to have outgrown the Eredivisie and could be ready for a dream switch to England.

    He said: "Of course the Premier League interests me. It's the best league in the world, and I've always wanted to play there.

    "But I leave all that in God's hands."

  • It is out of the question me and Aguero will leave - Jesus quashes Manchester City exit talk It is out of the question me and Aguero will leave - Jesus quashes Manchester City exit talk

    Gabriel Jesus insists there is no chance he and strike partner Sergio Aguero will leave Manchester City before next season.

    The Brazil international, who is currently away on Copa America duty, was restricted to just eight Premier League starts in 2018-19 due to the goalscoring form of Aguero.

    That led to speculation last month suggesting City are prepared to offload Jesus during the close-season in order to raise funds to bring in other players.

    But the 22-year-old sees his future at the Etihad Stadium and insists he is respectful of Aguero's status at the club, which has forced him to settle for a back-up role.

    "He is a legend at the club - he's the top scorer [of all time]," he told the Daily Mail. "Obviously as a player I always want to play, but I'm happy to help and I respect Sergio.

    "I think it's out of the question that Aguero leaves, and me too."

  • Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United - Brazil forward Everton open to future move Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United - Brazil forward Everton open to future move

    Brazil and Gremio forward Everton has talked up a move to Manchester United by suggesting his playing style may suit the Premier League.

    The 23-year-old scored a late stunner to seal Brazil's 3-0 win over Bolivia in Friday's Copa America opener, adding to Philippe Coutinho's brace.

    Everton made his nine minutes on the field count at Estadio do Morumbi to further enhance his reputation as he cut inside from the left and sent the ball flying past Carlos Lampe.

    And after opening his account for the Brazil senior side, Everton eyed up a move to a big European club, with Old Trafford a possible destination.

    "I'm a player that's always trying to get on top [of the opposition]," he told the Daily Mail.

    "Cutting in from the left with dribbles and good finishes - clubs in Europe have this style of play. Maybe I can fit in at Manchester United and others."

    Everton, capped seven times by Brazil, has scored three goals for Gremio in the Copa Libertadores this season and seven times in the domestic league.

    He has also been linked with a move to Manchester City and AC Milan in recent months.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.