The former Manchester City winger could be a key figure in Chelsea’s push for a European spot.
Chelsea’s chances of finishing in Europe in the Premier League this season have been boosted this week by the return of Raheem Sterling to first-team training after an injury layoff.
What is the most recent update on Sterling’s injury?
The former Manchester City and Liverpool star was ruled out of recent games against Leicester City and Everton due to injury, which was a major setback for Graham Potter following his impressive goalscoring performance against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.
He wasn’t fit enough to be called up to Gareth Southgate’s England squad during the international break, but he used the time to recover and is now back in training ahead of the game against Aston Villa this weekend.
Could Sterling rekindle Chelsea’s flame?
Sterling has had a difficult time since joining Chelsea last summer, as he has only four goals and two assists in 19 Premier League appearances, averaging a disappointing 6.73 rating from WhoScored.
However, he had impressed in his previous two appearances, earning 7.36 and 7.31 ratings from WhoScored in victories over Leeds United and Dortmund, indicating that his return could be timely.
Despite his struggles in the final third this season, the England international is still the second highest-scoring player in Potter’s squad, trailing only Kai Havertz, indicating that he can be relied on to deliver in the final third.
With the Blues finally starting to click after a barren run of form in front of goal, chances for Chelsea’s attackers will surely start to arrive, and Sterling will undoubtedly benefit, helping to reignite the club in the process.
The 28-year-old scored 131 goals and assisted 95 times during his time at the Etihad, and Chelsea need to see those numbers to justify paying £325k per week for him last summer.
Last season, former Premier League striker Tony Cascarino praised the Jamaican-born winger on talkSPORT, saying:
“Raheem Sterling has just been terrifying.” He’s had a fantastic year since the Euros, and he was brilliant then.
“When they signed Jack Grealish this season, I thought Raheem might be a bit part player in this City team, but he’s become an absolute permanent fixture.” He’s tearing people apart, left and right.”
As a result, if Potter can unleash this Sterling in the final few months of the season, the Blues have a real chance of climbing the table and securing some form of European football next year.