'Liverpool is perfect for him' - Gerrard urges Sterling to sign new deal

The youngster was back to his best against Bournemouth and his captain believes the chance to keep playing regular football at the highest level is too good to turn down.

STEVEN GERRARD HAS urged Raheem Sterling to sign a new contract at Liverpool, claiming the club is “perfect for him” if he is develop into a top-class player.

The winger has been linked with a move away from Anfield, with Real Madrid and Bayern Munich reportedly interested, though the 20-year-old is wary of committing his long-term future to the club while there is uncertainty over Rodgers’ position.

But Gerrard is hopeful his former England team-mate will put pen to paper on a new deal soon, with the promise of regular football set to help him reach the next level.

“I hope he signs a new contract at the club because I think this club is perfect for him, certainly for the next few years,” he told reporters.

“He’s going to play most weeks, the fans love him here. He can progress here and become a top, top player here so I hope the people around him give him the right advice because he should stay here.”

Gerrard feels the pace that Sterling possesses means he can prove to be a real threat in the final third, and compared him to previous Liverpool strikers Fernando Torres and Michael Owen due to their similar assets.

“He’s great to watch, great to play with, he’s got that pace,” he added. “When you look up he’s always giving you an option and that’s what I’ve thrived on throughout my career at Liverpool with the likes of Fernando Torres and Michael Owen.

“There’s nothing better as a midfielder when you look up and see pace running in behind. I saw it on numerous occasions [against Bournemouth] and hopefully it will continue because it stretches teams and creates chances.”

Sterling’s suitability for a central role was questioned after he was denied on three occasions by David de Gea against Manchester United, but Gerrard believes he has the clinical edge required to play as a striker.

“You’ve got to be able to have that [versatility] in your locker if you want to be top drawer. Raheem’s got potential to be top drawer for sure,” he explained.

“He took a lot of stick after the weekend [the loss to Manchester United] but I thought his all-round performance was magnificent, the only thing that was missing was a finish and that came [against Bournemouth].

“The exciting thing for all of us is that he’s English and going to be a top, top player. I think he can play anywhere along the front, he’s that intelligent. He’s got to keep learning, he’s got to keep wanting it.”

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