Sterling close to new Liverpool deal after talks over Rodgers' future

EXCLUSIVE: The England international, who was afforded a short break over the weekend, has been reassured that the Reds are not seeking a replacement for their manager
By Graeme Bailey

Raheem Sterling is edging closer to signing a new Liverpool contract after receiving assurances regarding the future of Brendan Rodgers.

Sterling has been in talks with Liverpool chiefs over a contract extension over the last few months amid claims that he had turned down their approaches, with Real Madrid ready to pounce.

But the England international is now ready to commit his future to Anfield.

Sterling delayed signing a new deal due to concerns over Rodgers's long-term future, with Liverpool struggling to match last season's title challenge.

Sterling is very close to his manager, who has nurtured his talent since arriving at the club, developing the teenager from a youngster on the fringes of the first team to one of the world's most sought-after young talents.

Rodgers even allowed the winger a mid-season trip to his native Jamaica, affording him some rest and recuperation going into the second half of the campaign despite Liverpool facing Sunderland on Saturday.

Now, following talks between Sterling's representatives and Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre, a deal is close to being agreed.

Ayre is understood to have given assurances to Sterling's camp that the Reds are not looking to replace Rodgers, while the terms of the deal have never been a major issue and an agreement is edging ever closer.

A source confirmed to Goal: "Raheem and Brendan are very close and there was a worry about the future of the manager.

"But Liverpool have given assurances and they insist that recent reports that they were considering his position are far from the truth and they are committed to him - which is what Raheem wanted to hear."