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Barcelona Close To Sealing A Loan Move For This English Winger: What Will He Add To Xavi’s Side?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent report, El Nacional claimed that Barcelona are getting closer to sealing a loan move for Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling this January. It is understood that the Catalans are in advanced talks to bring the England international to the Nou Camp on a loan deal this winter.

Sterling’s Diminishing Influence At Manchester City This Season

Sterling has found playing minutes hard to come by at the Etihad Stadium this season as he has lost his first-team privileges following the arrival of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa last summer. The former Liverpool playmaker has participated in 15 matches for Man City this season, netting two goals and securing two assists across all competitions.

The 26-year-old has often found himself on Pep Guardiola’s bench which could be why he is only averaging 1.4 shots, 0.7 key passes and 0.9 dribbles per game in Premier League football. He has even been tidy with his ball distribution after making 82.3% of his attempted passes in the English top tier (stats via whoscored).

Barcelona (Raheem Sterling)
BURTON UPON TRENT, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 11: Raheem Sterling of England looks on during a training session at St George’s Park on November 11, 2021 in Burton upon Trent, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
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What Will Sterling Add To Barcelona Boss Xavi’s Team?

Sterling is blessed with electric pace which he can use to get the better of his marker out on the wide areas. He is usually a hard man to stop when he is running at full swing deep inside the opponent’s half. The Three Lions star has a low centre of gravity that allows him to make some clever turns in and around the penalty box. Plus, he is proficient at earning penalties and can even orchestrate some meaningful chances for others around him.

Sterling seems to have lost his way at the Etihad this season but can still play an influential role for most top-flight sides in Europe. At the moment, Barca are in dire need of a fresh face in attack as they are overly reliant on Ansu Fati and Memphis Depay to bang in the goals for them this season.

Someone of Sterling’s experience and winning mindset will be an ideal acquisition for the Catalans giants during this winter transfer window. We can also expect the Man City outcast to add plenty of pace and goals to Xavi’s frontline at the Nou Camp. Hence, Barcelona should consider going all out to acquire Sterling’s services on loan this January.

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