Liverpool's Raheem Sterling lacks the maturity to handle Real Madrid like Gareth Bale

Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling is running out of options. Could he really handle the pressure Gareth Bale has since leaving Tottenham?

Liverpool rebel Raheem Sterling is running out of options, as he takes his efforts to leave the club up a notch.

The Mirror described his relationship with the club as 'toxic', stating his relationship with manager Brendan Rodgers is damaged beyond repair.

Sterling missed his second consecutive day of pre-season training, citing illness, and is also refusing to go on the club's pre-season tour.

Manchester City have made no secret of their desire to sign him, while three months ago it was reported by SkySports that Spanish side Real Madrid are monitoring the winger.

New manager Rafa Benitez knows Sterling, having played a part in bringing him to Liverpool from QPR, and the La Liga side are yet to make a marquee signing.

Whether they now want to, considering all the negative press Sterling and his agent have garnered due to his ongoing dispute with Liverpool, is another matter.

Just as much of an issue is whether the England international could handle the pressure if he moved to Real Madrid?

Ask Gareth Bale

After moving to Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in 2013, Gareth Bale has had a rollercoaster ride at the club.

He had a difficult start, before playing a key role in winning the Copa del Rey and Champions League in his debut season, before a very tricky second season.

The 25-year-old scored 17 goals for Real last season, more than Sterling has in any season in his career, yet he was lambasted by the Spanish press, and whistled by his own fans.

On one occasion he was even confronted as he left the Real training ground, not for refusing to sign a new deal as Sterling has behaved, but instead just below-par performances.

For a footballer abroad, Bale could have cracked and started demanding a move back to England, but he got his head down and got his form back on track, as shown with his end of season performances for Wales.

Could Sterling handle such adversity? This remember is the player who asked not to be picked for his country last season due to feeling tired.

This is the player whose form took a nosedive after off the field issues overshadowed his on pitch confidence. How long would he last at Real before getting homesick?

Options are running out for Raheem Sterling, and in recent months he has become less attractive to the likes of Real Madrid rather than more, and he ought to ask himself the reasons why.

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