FIFA World Cup 2018: Will Raheem Sterling replicate Manchester City form for England at the 2018 FIFA World Cup

The highly dynamic and talented Raheem Sterling was a very instrumental member of the uber-dominant Manchester City side which triumphantly won the English Premier League under Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City in the 2017-2018 season.

Accomplished Spaniard, Pep Guardiola, has officially won all major domestic titles in three different European domestic leagues throughout his illustrious managerial career – La Liga Primera, Bundesliga in Germany and the English Premier League. Guardiola won the English Premier League with Manchester City in his second season in the EPL.

Under the tutelage of Guardiola, Sterling won his first-ever EPL title of his successful career in 2017-2018.

Guardiola’s winning mentality and astute tactical excellence has been a beneficial factor for Sterling, especially with regards to the very talented England forward’s end product and overall displays. Furthermore, Sterling’s Opta and Squawka performance statistics have been fairly exceptional irrespective of periodic underperformance.

The City forward recorded an average pass average of 84% throughout 2017-2018, whereas Sterling recorded a shot on goal average of 53%.

In addition, the England forward won 46% of duels throughout the 2017-2018 campaign. Unmistakably, Raheem Sterling’s finest game in the 2017-2018 season for Manchester City came against Crystal Palace (a performance score of 78).

Conversely, Sterling’s least productive game for Manchester City in the English Premier League during the 2017-2018 campaign came against his former club Liverpool, which witnessed the England forward register a so-so performance score of 37.

In 2017-2018, Sterling made 36 appearances for City in the EPL; Sterling featured eight times for Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League in 2017-2018. Sterling has a Squawka rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars and in the EPL in 2017-2018 Sterling scored 19 times and assisted 12 goals.

According to Opta and Squawka performance statistics, Sterling’s peak attacking form for Guardiola’s Manchester City came during December 2017 in the 2017-2018 season. Moreover, September 2017 also witnessed Sterling’s best overall play.

Sterling’s overall performance score for 2017-2018 was 832 compared to Leroy Sané’s performance score of 920 and Kevin de Bruyne’s overall performance score of 1100.

However, Sterling’s performance score bettered Sergio Aguero, who scored 725 (4.5 stars out of 5 stars for performance score), whereas Bernado Silva scored an overall performance score of 547; Bernado Silva completed a pass average of 87% and created 32 chances for City. Sergio Aguero scored 30 goals for City in the 2017-2018 season.

Sterling’s overall slight dips in performance for Manchester City came during the winter period in the 2017-2018.

In terms of ball movement and passing creativity, Sterling’s average pass length is 12 meters. In addition, Sterling registered 51 created chances in the 2017-2018 season for Manchester City. Sterling’s peak of ball possession came in October 2017 for City.

Throughout City’s EPL winning 2017-2018 season, Sterling scored 23 goals in 46 games. Sterling improved his scoring from the previous season at the club, which witnessed the England star netting 10 goals for Manchester City throughout the 2016-2017 season.

This past season, however, Manchester City garnered an unprecedented 100 points in the English Premier League in the 2017-2018 season, which has since led many critics to hail Guardiola’s Manchester City side of 2017-2018 as the greatest team performance throughout a season in English Premier League history.

One of the very best young players in Europe today, Sterling is an integral part of a very dominant Manchester City side, which features: Sergio Aguero, David Silva, Kevin de Bruyne, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus and John Stones to name just a few.

In the 2013-2014 season, Sterling was an integral part of the Liverpool squad which almost won their first league title in 24 years. The Reds finished second on the final day of the season after an otherwise incredible campaign, which was inspired by Luis Suarez, Daniel Sturridge, and of course Sterling.

Sterling left Liverpool to join Manchester City for £49 million on a five-year contract in June 2015. During Sterling’s first season (2015-2016) at Manchester City, the forward scored 10 goals. Furthermore, Raheem Sterling netted 11 goals throughout the entire 2016-2017 campaign for City.

2017-2018 witnessed Sterling more than double his goal tally, whilst also reaching the UEFA Champions League Quarter-Finals with City. Furthermore, Manchester City also claimed the EFL Cup in 3-0 win over Arsenal at Wembley Stadium on February 25, 2018.

Sterling has represented England 37 times and has scored twice for the Three Lions. Sterling is the first Jamaica-born player to represent England at a FIFA World Cup since Liverpool legend, John Barnes.

This summer, Sterling will compete in his second FIFA World Cup tournament with England under boss, Gareth Southgate. Southgate’s England are among the nations expected to perform very well this summer at the FIFA World Cup 2018 in Russia. According to ESPN, England are 20-1 favorites to win the FIFA World Cup 2018 tournament this summer in Russia. Meanwhile, reigning FIFA World Cup holders Germany are 9-2 favorites, whereas Brazil are 5-1 and France 11-2 to win the FIFA World Cup this summer.

Raheem Sterling is part of a brand new exciting golden generation for England which also features Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford, Jesse Lingard, Dele Alli, Jamie Vardy, as well as Jordan Henderson, Eric Dier, John Stones, Danny Rose, Kyle Walker and Jordan Pickford.

Harry Kane has scored 12 goals in 23 games for England. Elsewhere, Vardy has netted seven goals in 21 appearances for the Three Lions, coupled alongside with Rashford scoring just twice in 17 games in an England shirt.

England will face Tunisia, Panama and Belgium in Group G at 2018 Russia FIFA World Cup. Sterling is entering the FIFA World Cup tournament with greater confidence than four summers ago and with even more finesse and finer reading of the game. England failed to advance from the group stage at 2014 Brazil FIFA World Cup.

Rashford is arguably the most accomplished and vastly talented 20-year-old competing at the 2018 Russia FIFA World Cup this summer. However, 23-year-old Sterling is a certified danger man for England this time around courtesy of a very polished and more consistent season at the Etihad Stadium in 2017-2018.

Glittering club form often does not translate into equal measured success at international level, whereas fatigue could play a factor after what has been a very long season for Sterling; The English professional game has no winter break in contrast to Germany.

The question remains: Will Raheem Sterling replicate his sensational Manchester City form in 2017-2018 for England this summer at the FIFA World Cup Russia 2018?

Follow Dean on Twitter @DeanPerretta

More predictions at Doc’s Sports.

(Photo Credit: Gareth Copley/Getty Images Europe)

Dean Perretta
Dean Perretta is a 2x SEA Award-winning creative, Broadcast Journalist, Reporter, Courtside Analyst for BBC televised London Lions and Executive Producer who currently contributes to FOX Sports Radio, FourFourTwo Magazine and Muscle & Fitness Magazine.