John Aldridge hits out at Raheem Sterling's agent, claims Liverpool form affected

The former Liverpool striker has suggested that the contract saga surrounding Sterling is affecting his performances on the field.

Former Liverpool striker John Aldridge has hit out at the agent of Raheem Sterling, claiming in his Liverpool Echo column that contract talks off the field may have affected his performance on it - which was illustrated during the 2-1 win over Queens Park Rangers at the weekend.

Sterling's deal discussions have become an unwelcome and potentially distracting saga, with the 20-year-old turning down an offer of fresh terms and some suggesting that his decision has been influenced by advice from his representative.

The winger's performance on Saturday was summed up with a shocking miss from three yards out as he tapped a wonderful Jordan Henderson cross wide.

Aldridge doesn't blame the player, though, as he wrote: "I think the manager needs to have a real look at Raheem Sterling between now and the end of the season.

"I thought the lad tried really hard against QPR, he gave everything but because of what’s happened – and through his agent 100% - he’s not mentally right.

"He’s messed up in his head so I’d like to thank the agent for doing that to him.

"I feel so sorry for the lad because he’s trying to give his best but the agent has dealt with it awfully – absolutely amateurish."

It seemed - from the outside, at least - that the whole point of not continuing with the contract talks during the season and putting them off until the summer was to try and let Sterling concentrate on his football so that they didn't mess with him psychologically. Aldridge evidently feels that isn't the case.

Both the club and the player need to sort things out pretty quickly, but it does feel as though there is some resentment building towards Sterling from Liverpool fans, whether that is fair or not. If he wants more money, then he has to prove he has the ability by finishing opportunities presented to him, such as the one on Saturday.

There is no doubt Sterling is an enormous talent, but questions continue to be asked of those  that advise him.

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