Liverpool and England captain Steven Gerrard thinks Raheem Sterling can go “all the way to the top” after a fine start to his senior career.
The 17-year-old starlet scored his first goal for Liverpool at the weekend against Reading, making him the second-youngest goalscorer in Liverpool’s history.
“I think he has been a great surprise to everyone, not that he is doing so well at this level but I don’t think anyone expected him to break through so early,” Gerrard told reporters.
“I think we all knew he was going to be good enough to play for the first team but when they are young and small and that size, sometimes you need to take a little bit of extra care.
“They [young players] used to get a taste towards the end of the season but the manager has come in, seen what he has done in pre-season and said he is ready now.
“He hasn’t let anyone down and he’s been sensational so far.
“If he can add assists and goals to his game the more he grows he can go all the way to the top.”
The skipper also believes that Brendan Rodgers’ faith in Sterling has been a key factor in his development but warns that the former QPR trainee still has a long way to go.
“First and foremost he has the trust of the manager,” Gerrard added. “He is the one who picks the team and week in, week out he is getting a start.
“That is what you need when you break through; you need the manager to believe in you because sometimes it is hard to play well every game.
“When you don’t play well, the manager keeps playing you and he’s telling you that you are ready for this level, you’re going to be around for a long time so get out and do your stuff and that is what he did against Reading.”