Liverpool need to learn lessons from Raheem Sterling when handling Jordon Ibe

There have been inevitable comparisons between Ibe and Sterling given they play a similar position, but with Ibe a year younger, there are lessons for Liverpool to learn.

Jordon Ibe looks set to sign a new contract with Liverpool according to the Daily Mail, after accepting terms presented to him in February during an impressive run in the first team.

There have been a few comparisons between Ibe and Raheem Sterling. Both of them are wingers with a lot of pace and seem to strike fear into any opponents they face.

With Ibe exactly a year younger than Sterling, one may be forgiven for thinking that Liverpool could be facing similar circumstances this time next year with the younger player of the duo. Sterling has put on hold contract talks until the summer, with an apparent disagreement when it comes to his pay dominating the headlines.

Sterling started off as a bright player, like Ibe, and has increasingly become an integral part of the Liverpool team - something which the Reds hope Ibe will become.

But with that comes certain demands; in the case of Sterling money seems to be a stumbling block, though he protests that he is not greedy when it comes to the negotiations, and Brendan Rodgers seemed to hit out at those who are advising Sterling after the 4-1 defeat to Arsenal last week, the Daily Mail reported.

Both in terms of developing the player, and how he is looked after off the field, there are lessons to be learned. Before he really emerged last season as one of the vital cogs in the Liverpool machine, Sterling was used pretty sparingly until around December after a run in the side the previous season.

Ibe has already had a couple of loan spells away from the club so has managed to develop without the spotlight firmly fixed upon him with Football League clubs.

Off the field, the negotiations over his contract have been fairly smooth this time around, it seems, as little fuss has been reported since. Rodgers will no doubt want to ensure he is rewarded for his progress before being given the burden of a big pay deal in the future.

Ibe could become increasingly important to the Liverpool cause. He was talked up as a talismanic figure, seemingly before contract talks were even reported. By putting more pressure on him, there are bound to be more demands when it comes to the pay packet from those advising him.

The big lesson learned from all this should be: handle Ibe with care!

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