Raheem Sterling is in great shape this season and Dani Carvajal will be the Real Madrid player who will try to contain the Englishman in the return leg of the Champions League last 16 tie against Manchester City.
The 25-year-old forward only played 17 minutes in the first leg at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, but they were enough to trouble Los Blancos’ defence.
He was the player to tee up Gabriel Jesus for Manchester City’s equaliser and he forced Carvajal to concede a penalty, which was converted by Kevin de Bruyne for his team’s second.
Sterling has scored 29 times across all competitions this season, which means just one goal fewer than Lionel Messi.
He has already managed to break his personal record of 25 goals scored in a season and at Real Madrid they are aware that he is Manchester City’s main attacking threat.
To contain the Englishman on the pitch, Zinedine Zidane will try to prepare Carvajal, who is the only natural right-back in the squad.
Eder Militao will play at centre-back due to Sergio Ramos’ absence and neither Lucas Vazquez nor Nacho Fernandez will be given the nod at right-back in such an important game.
Real Madrid’s defence has been solid this season, yet Sterling is currently in great form, having scored six goals in the last three Premier League matches.
Meanwhile, the England international has netted five of Manchester City’s 18 goals in the Champions League.
Fight against racism
Following football’s restart, Sterling also made the headlines with his remarks against racism.
“The only disease that exists is racism,” he told BBC back in June.
“This is the most important thing at this moment in time because this is something that is happening for years and years
“Just like the pandemic, we want to find a solution to stop it.”
Back in December 2018, Sterling hit out at the media for the way they treat young black footballers.
“All I have to say is have a second thought about fair publicity and give all players an equal chance,” he said.
“I think this is unacceptable.
“Just by the way it has been worded, this young black kid is looked at in a bad light, which helps fuel racism and aggressive behaviour.”
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