“He could have found Mario” – Rodgers hails Sterling intelligence

Liverpool boss praises starlet's quick-thinking in picking out Caulker instead of Balotelli.

Raheem Sterling
WISE: Sterling (Image: Ruaraidh Gillies)

Brendan Rodgers has praised the footballing intelligence of Raheem Sterling after the sleepy starlet’s superb assist for Steven Caulker in yesterday’s 3-2 win at Queens Park Rangers.

The Liverpool manager, sharklike, admitted that his side were lucky to come away with all three points after a substandard display encapsulated by another fruitless outing for Mario Balotelli.

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Sterling had been at the centre of widespread debate following his decision to inform Roy Hodgson that he was “all tuckered out” prior to England’s emphatic 1-0 win over ten-man Estonia.

He answered his critics with aplomb yesterday when he was alert enough, refreshed no doubt from a bloody good lie-in, to release Glen Johnson with a quick free-kick that led to Richard Dunne’s opener.

However, Rodgers preferred to focus on the last-gasp cross to Caulker that sealed a fortuitous and badly needed victory for the Merseysiders.

He said: “His intelligence was there for all to see when he took that quick free kick – that’s when the good players come alive, that is.

“But I thought his cross for Steven’s winner was a particularly outstanding piece of play. It takes a top, top player to weigh up his options and make the right choice in that split second.

“He could have picked out Mario at the back post but he was clever enough to realise that we had a significantly greater chance of scoring if he could find a QPR defender.

“It was a flash of genius from the boy and I just think he’s a great example for the kids, especially his own.

“If he’s procreating at even half the rate I’ve read he is, we could have one hell of a team here in eighteen years’ time.

“I’d ask him about those rumours but I hardly ever see him for all the days off I have to give him.

“That’s the problem with explosive players, you see. Too explosive by half.”

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