Brendan Rodgers has intervened in contract negotiations between the club and Raheem Sterling, as Liverpool look to finalise the deal as quickly as possible.
The former Swansea manager has revealed that he has taken a more hands-on approach with the negotiations to ensure that Sterling’s development rather than money will be at the forefront of the issues discussed.
Rodgers admitted that he has held personal talks with Sterling detailing a plan which will help the winger progress under the watchful eye of the Liverpool team.
Rodgers told The Mirror: “I’ve talked at length to Raheem and gone through what I’d call the core elements of his development.
“First and foremost, there’s the commitment from us as a club to him, and, likewise, from him to us.
“Then, after that, we’ve talked about the plan and the development, going forwards over this period of time.
“It’s then his responsibility to deliver. Because he’ll have all the tools here at Liverpool Football Club – one of the top football clubs in the world – in order to progress.
“So there’s a plan in place for him – there’s a commitment there – and he’s a real good kid.
“It’s quite low profile, really. We just want to make sure it’s right for him and he feels it, and I believe he does. I will get it done sooner or later.”
Rodgers stated his belief in pin-pointing the expectations of the player, before criticising the long-term contracts which younger players are receiving and blaming such deals for extinguishing their “hunger”.
“I have taken a more hands-on approach with Raheem, and I always try to with the younger players, but for me a lot of this is about common sense.
“I don’t want the club or the kid being affected by over-the-odds demands.
“I think there’s a value I see in a young player that hasn’t achieved anything. All the figures that get bandied about for kids these days, and it can destroy them.
“I’m in the business of trying to help nurture these kids, and money distorts the reality, I’ve always said that, so I’ve always tried to ensure that I give my point of view on it.
“With young players, contracts get handed out left, right and centre to a kid who’s not done anything – getting a four-year deal on decent money – and then clubs wonder why, after two or three years, it’s gone wrong.
“It’s gone wrong because you’ve given him a four-year deal – you take away his hunger.
“It’s about being sensible, and that’s what we do, but our managing director Ian Ayre does a brilliant job in pulling the contracts together.
“He’s been excellent and obviously there’s good communication with the owners.
“So it’s about using common sense rather than going over the top.”