Raheem Sterling wants to meet with the English FA and Premier League leaders in an effort to combat racism in football.
The Manchester City ace put together a fine season, having been named as Footballer of the Year by the Football Writers’ Association last month.
But the winger has also put in work off the field and has been an outspoken leader in the fight against racism in football, and says he would like to meet with leaders in the sport to discuss ways to put an end to it.
“In football you can get caught up with training every day and games every two, three days so you don’t really have a lot of time to be out and speaking to people,” Sterling said during a moderated discussion at the Wall Street Journal’s Future of Everything conference on Tuesday.
“But for sure on my off time and holidays if I can get around and speak to the FA and the people in the Premier League and see how we can go about doing things better in the future for sure I’ll be there in person to try and do that.”
Sterling believes that one crucial way to combat racist chants from supports would be nine-point deduction from the team, reiterating his belief that supporters will be less willing to make racist remarks if they know it will impact the club's league standing.
“If I go to a football game and I support Manchester United, for example, I don’t want to be the person that lets my team down by saying silly remarks in a stadium,” said Sterling.
“If you know your team is going to get deducted nine points from them winning the league you are not going to say these racist remarks even though you shouldn’t have it in your head.”
While Sterling wants to see the harsh punishment enacted, he admits that things now are much better than they were in previous years.
“Ten years ago it was a lot, lot worse than it is now. It’s starting to get better and people are understanding that they can’t say certain things,” he said.
“But I think it’s partly English culture on a Saturday to go out early and get ready for the game and start drinking. So a lot of these people are kind of drunk by the time they get (to the stadium). But it’s getting lot better than it used to be.”