Three players for Sterling to remember if he’s debating Anfield exit

The Liverpool winger has until now and the end of season to see why leaving Liverpool would be a dangerous and potentially crazy decision.

With Raheem Sterling's assertion that he would not be discussing a new contract at Liverpool until the end of the season, in a public BBC interview no less, it is natural that some Reds fans may be a little unsure as to where this episode is going to leave the England international, especially if Brendan Rodgers' side fail to make the Champions League places.

Though Sterling is very much remaining at Anfield for the near future, especially with a contract running for another two and a half years, not to mention manager Rodgers' assertion that the winger will be not be sold this summer, the last thing Liverpool need is a young promising star who has been poorly advised unsettling the team spirit.

So in order to remind Sterling just how good he has it at Anfield, lest he's forgotten, and to encourage him to remain at the club that brought him through earlier than any other of the Premier League's top outfits would have, we have put together three names that left a club where they were making perfectly good progress because they thought they deserved a big money move and an even bigger wage.

Sterling may be a more established player already than those below, but at 20-years-old, what he needs more than anything is regular football, the trust of coaches capable of making him better, and to play at a competitive level. He already has that at one Liverpool, still one of the world's biggest clubs: 

Asier Illarramendi - The gifted midfielder arrived at Real Madrid from Real Sociedad for a large fee in 2013, and was heralded as the new Xabi Alonso. However, Illarramendi has failed to claim the departed Spanish legend's spot since he left for Bayern last summer, starting just six games in La Liga and with just 723 minutes on the pitch. Now 25, he is still yet to win a cap for Spain, something he surely would have done if he'd stayed at Sociedad - a warning sign if Sterling has an eye on a move to the Bernabeu.

Jack RodwellThe former Everton man isn't the only player that failed to see his big move to Manchester City come off after an impressive couple of seasons that left him on the cusp of the England squad, Scott Sinclair could just as easily be used here. Both moved to the Etihad to be little more than squad players, as well as to fill up a homegrown spot in City's international squad. Rodwell in particular has seen his career falter when it looked so promising at the Toffees. Now 24, he has dropped down further than he was at Everton by turning out at relegation threatened Sunderland.

Shaun Wright-Phillips - Having left boyhood club Manchester City in 2005 for moneybags Chelsea (if only Shaun had waited around a couple of years longer), Wright-Phillips got plenty of games in West London, but predictably limited minutes, and was ultimately still third choice to the likes of Arjen Robben, Damien Duff and even Joe Cole. By the time all those players had left, the England winger was still not in favour, and he returned to Manchester in 2008 after the Abu Dhabi group had bankrolled City. His time at the Etihad petered out too, and the winger will surely look back at his career and wonder whether he did himself justice.

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