Newcastle United’s Rolando Aarons has admitted his admiration for Raheem Sterling ahead of Saturday’s Premier League clash against Liverpool, but the youngster insists he has no desire to be compared to his Anfield counterpart.
The 18-year-old winger returned from a six-week injury lay-off in style on Wednesday as he scored Newcastle’s opener after just five minutes in their shock 2-0 Capital One Cup win at Manchester City.
His impact during his breakthrough season has drawn comparisons with his fellow Jamaican-born teenager, and even lead to reports that he could soon be fast-tracked into the senior England side.
Aarons stresses, however, that he is still some way off Sterling’s level and, for now, is just happy to claim the Red star’s shirt on Saturday at St James' Park – but probably not at half-time after the recent Mario Balotelli saga.
‘I always hoped this would be my breakthrough season,’ he was quoted in the Guardian.
‘But I’m not Raheem Sterling. We’re different players and I’ve a long way to go before I can even consider myself to be anywhere near that level.
‘He’s played for England at the World Cup and I’ve only played three or four games for Newcastle United. I don’t think there’s any reason to get carried away.
‘Hopefully I’ll get the chance to play against him on Saturday and if that happens I might ask for his shirt. Why not? Whatever happens, I definitely won’t be swapping at half-time though.’