Raheem Sterling is a money grabber and so are you

Raheem Sterling and Liverpool have come to an impasse. He would like more money, and perhaps a different club, and they would like him to stay for the money he’s currently on. Sterling, who is 20 years old with 14 England caps and in his third full season with the club, is currently making £35,000 a week and has reportedly turned offers from £100,000 a week to £180,000 a week.

All of those figures are high for a player his age. So why does he think he’s worth so much? Here’s where he ranks amongst Liverpool players in a few key stats this season…

(Sky Sports News)
(Sky Sports News)

Despite that, and the apparent interest of other clubs, many people still believe he’s out of line for not just being satisfied with whatever Liverpool are willing to give him. So after being taken to task by fans and members of the media, Sterling decided to do a BBC interview without prior consent from Liverpool in order to tell his side.

From the BBC:

“It’s not about the money at all,” the England forward said.

“It’s never been about money. I talk about winning trophies throughout my career. That’s all I talk about.”

He added: “I don’t talk about how many cars I’m going to drive, how many houses I’ve got. I just purely want to be the best I can be.” […]

“I don’t want to be perceived as a money-grabbing 20-year-old,” said the player, who has two years left on a contract worth £35,000 a week.

The fear of being perceived as greedy is likely real, but to say that a major decision about his career isn’t at all about money is absurd. It most definitely is about the money, at least in part, and it should be. Money is an integral part of job decisions for everyone. If another employer offers you more money than your current employer, whether you’re a janitor or the CEO of a major corporation, everyone you know will automatically accept that as reason enough to change places of employment.

But we don’t allow professional athletes to do this. They are supposed to do their jobs for the love of it and remain loyal to clubs that only use them for as long as they’re useful and fans who will threaten their lives the second they underperform. If they’re so much as suspected of wanting to change teams for a more lucrative contract, they’re labeled mercenaries and subhuman.

Why? Because whatever they’re getting paid is presumably more than the average person in the stands could ever comprehend possessing. And to get that for playing a game we pay to watch means they are beyond lucky and should always be supremely grateful for everything, even if the market suggests otherwise. Then again, our intense interest in their talents is the reason they’re getting paid so much in the first place.

“Discontent for money is a trick of the rich to keep the poor without it,” Michael Corleone said. And though Premier League footballers aren’t poor, they’re certainly far less wealthy than the men who write their checks. Their careers can end at any moment with one bad challenge and, at most, the trade they’ve devoted their entire lives to learning will be a distant memory come middle age. They have an extraordinarily brief window to earn as much money as possible before facing an uncertain future and the very real possibility having to make that money support their families for decades.

But instead of understanding this and being happy when young people are able to get their proportional slice of an ever growing pie, we condemn them for it, unwittingly helping club owners keep that revenue firehose aimed directly into their own accounts.

It’s the clubs who leak these stories of players rejecting their generous offers in the hopes that public pressure can be used to guilt them into accepting less money and dupe them into thinking that loyalty will keep them warm after they retire. It’s a trick. And we help carry it out while those same owners use other tricks on us (three shiny new kits every season and ever rising ticket prices, because there’s always someone else to take your seat if you don’t want to pay!).

We’re all money grabbers to varying degrees. For the sake of ourselves and our loved ones, we have to be. And Raheem Sterling, who, by the way, has a young daughter, is no different.


  1. Spot on Brooks. This whole story is getting way out of hand. People forget that he’s still young. He has the chance to make more many than most footballers, so why not get as much as possible? You never know when a serious injury will come around, especially considering the amount of games he’s already played during his young career. Hopefully, FIFA changing their rules on “agents” will prevent these horrendous human beings using players and fueling baseless gossip.

  2. Mike Mems says:

    Raheem and the Quest to be Great
    Jamie Carragher, Harry Redknapp and a drove of others have been a thorn in my side recently – A kind of niggling little annoyance that just will not go away. In my life I usually find a nice and proper solution to rid myself of those little irritations or I tend to become extremely annoyed until the pot simmers over and I blow my top. I have reaching my boiling point, hence I am about “going in” as Lil Wayne so eloquently put it, and I am going to have a serious go! From Jamie Carragher to Harry Redknapp to every other Liverpoool sympathizer – because lets be serious that’s what is going on here. Anyone with any kind of link to Liverpool is opening their mouth spouting off their opinions, which hold very little and mean not a damn thing to the kid Raheem Sterling. Let us take a look at some other cases that I vaguely remember about a young footballer wanting to improve their situation – for money or ambition or both. Theo Walcott wasn’t criticized for wanting to move from Southampton to Arsenal for “ambition”. And the same went for Oxlade – Chamberlin, Calum Chambers, Jack Rowell, Andy Carroll, and even a young Gareth Bale. None of these people ever dreamt of opening their mouths in the aforementioned cases. What’s up with them wanting to vilify Raheem Sterling? Why? Because he has ambition to be the best he can be? Well guess what, in this world money come hand and hand with success, and the fact that he is a crucial cog in Brendan Rodgers wheel means he should be paid as such! Let’s take a closer look at Liverpool in the past. Steve McManaman left to go to Real Madrid in search of trophies. Michael Owen left Liverpool for Real Madrid in search of trophies. Fernando Torres left Liverpool to go south to London in search of what exactly again? Oh yeah that’s right – trophies. More recently there has been a player who left who is the very definition of ambition. Who will stop at nothing to win? Handballs on the goal line in the knockout stages of the World Cup, biting opponents etc… Luis Suarez also left Liverpool to go to Barcelona in search of trophies. It has been documented “what kind of guy” Raheem for all too long. He’s not a dummy and people have been genuinely interested in his footballing development since he signed for QPR – I know I have. He left QPR to go to Liverpool because he had ambition and they wanted to pay him for his footballing ability. So where did it all of a sudden take this drastic turn that he is a money grabber? He’s a smart boy! He’s trained everyday next to champions like Jamie Carragher, Steven Gerrard, and Luis Suarez. He’s seen pre and post training sessions of what it takes to be at the highest level for as long as possible. He’s also seen Luis Suarez be promised a move only for the club to have selective amnesia about those promises. He’s seen Luis’ ambition first hand on the training pitch, matches, and against him in the World Cup…Being in a position to win trophies ear after year is what Raheem wants for himself. Clubs that can take him to the next level, surrounded by world class talent where you have no choice but to improve and raise your game or you get the boot. The cold hard fact is that Liverpool are no longer that club in England or in Europe What’s wrong with having ambition to be the very best, to be around and learn from the best every day? What’s wrong with the money that comes with the territory? After seeing Carra and Stevie G stay to win nothing – and the lumps that came with their choice. The physical toll their bodies have taken for the club has had an impact on him. Luis Suarez is enjoying his football again! I assure that has had an impact on young Raheem. Raheem Sterling owes Liverpool nothing, and himself everything!


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