Man City’s Raheem Sterling ‘a target for imminent Barcelona boss Xavi’


Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling ‘is a target for Xavi when the Barcelona legend takes charge at the Nou Camp’… after out of favour star admitted he would ‘love to play abroad’ in a new ‘challenge’

  • Raheem Sterling has struggled for regular minutes at Manchester City this year 
  • The out of favour forward admitted he would be open to taking a move abroad 
  • Barcelona may swoop for him with their expected new manager Xavi an admirer 
  • Xavi is widely expected to take charge imminently after Ronald Koeman’s axing











Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling is a target for Xavi when he takes over as the new Barcelona boss, according to reports.

Ronald Koeman was sacked this week after his side’s defeat by Rayo Vallecano, and club legend Xavi is widely expected to be named as his successor.

And it appears he is already weighing up which big names to move for ahead of the next transfer window, with journalist Gerard Romero claiming Sterling is an option.

Manchester City star Raheem Sterling is a target for the incoming Barcelona manager Xavi

Sterling’s future at the Etihad is uncertain with his amount of minutes having taken a major hit this season, and he has admitted he would be open to heading abroad.

The £100million arrival of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa has only further fuelled the belief that the 26-year-old will leave, with Barcelona poised to make the deal happen.

Romero has also added that Xavi is a ‘big fan’ of Sterling – and the England man may be the first high-profile signing for the new, exciting era at the Nou Camp.

Xavi, who currently coaches Al-Sadd, is widely expected to replace the axed Ronald Koeman

Xavi, who currently coaches Al-Sadd, is widely expected to replace the axed Ronald Koeman

Sterling is struggling for regular minutes under Pep Guardiola and may now be open to leaving

Sterling is struggling for regular minutes under Pep Guardiola and may now be open to leaving

Sportsmail has previously reported that a number of elite clubs have been keeping a close eye on Sterling’s situation, and the winger is not adverse to a new challenge.

Speaking at the Financial Times’ Business of Sport US summit, he said: ‘If there was the option to go somewhere else for more game time I would be open to it. 

‘As I said, football is the most important thing to me – challenges that I have set myself from a young age and dreams as well.

‘As an English player all I know is the Premier League and I’ve always thought maybe one day I’d love to play abroad, to see how I would come up against that challenge.

Speaking at a Financial Times business summit, Sterling said he would consider a move abroad

Speaking at a Financial Times business summit, Sterling said he would consider a move abroad

‘I actually should be learning a few different languages. I quite like the French accent and Spanish.’

Sterling is contracted with City until the end of the 2022-23 campaign, however, and City would expect to bank a handsome fee – which Barcelona may struggle to afford.

Meanwhile, Pep Guardiola has warned the champions’ squad that he can’t guarantee any of them minutes, and also insisted past achievements don’t affect selections.

‘I cannot assure them game time, any one of them — they have to prove themselves,’ Guardiola said.

The forward is contracted at City until 2022-23 and his club would want to bring in a big figure

The forward is contracted at City until 2022-23 and his club would want to bring in a big figure

‘Raheem’s such an important player for us, many players are so important. If they are not satisfied, it is so simple. 

‘With their agents, go to the club and say, “I am not happy, I want to leave” and we are going to find a solution.

‘I am pretty sure of that. We want people committed and happy to be here. You want more minutes? I cannot assure them, not Raheem, not any of them.’

Guardiola and Sterling have held talks and parked their differences of opinion – although the latter won’t commit to a new deal until his short-term future is resolved.