Favorites Edit

Looking through the eyes of Raheem Sterling against Spain

375   //    16 Oct 2018, 16:21 IST

Raheem Sterling
Raheem Sterling

Ending your drought is a great feeling, but ending your goal-scoring drought and your nation's away goal-scoring drought could send you to cloud nine.

This is what Raheem Sterling is enjoying as of the moment. After three years of not scoring for his nation, Sterling scored twice in their win against Spain away from home giving himself his first goals for England away from Wembley Stadium, and the Three Lions' first victory away in Spain since 1987.

But what exactly was going through Sterling's head in the build-up to their match against Spain in Seville? Since 2015, the Manchester City forward has been receiving stick from his critics and fans alike because of his inconsistent performances.

Up stepped Gareth Southgate, who believes in the power of youth. With Sterling under his radar, Southgate gave the 23-year old winger all his faith, and a chance to redeem himself. Southgate, a believer in hard work, trusted Sterling's capability to turn things around, and made him start the match against the 2010 World Cup winners.

He did exactly what the gaffer expected from him by breaking free in the 16th minute away from Marcos Alonso as he received a gorgeous pass from Marcus Rashford. Not only did he stay onside, but he also made David De Gea go the wrong way to score his first away goal for England.

It was also the first time Sterling had scored against De Gea in 13 appearances.


He gestured to the crowd as if asking them to scream louder for him or looking for his critics. Indeed, it was a magical moment.

But he didn't stop there. He earned himself a brace as he positioned himself well to wait on a pass from Harry Kane. A play that started from Ross Barkley's cross found Kane inside the box. Sterling just had to tap the ball past De Gea.

And to top it all off, he didn't just score for England. He provided 21 accurate passes to his teammates, gained possession six times for his nation and ended the match with a 100% shot conversion rate. Now that's something to silence the doubters.

Will this be the start of a brighter future for Sterling?