Pabo Zabaletta aims dig at Raheem Sterling after refusal to sign Man City shirt
Posted by  badge Boss on Jul 19
Raheem Sterling refused to sign the shirt of his former club (Picture: TikTok / Sky Sports)

Pablo Zabaletta believes Raheem Sterling doesn’t deserve to be considered a legend, despite the England winger having played a key role in four Premier League title-winning campaigns under .

The 27-year-old called time on his City career this summer after seven trophy-laden years at the Etihad Stadium and joined rivals in a £45million transfer.

Sterling linked up with his new teammates in America last week and is vying to be in contention to make his debut against Charlotte tomorrow.

The England international was met by a group of his adoring new fans earlier this week and stopped to pen numerous autographs, but refused to sign the shirt of his former club when it was presented to him by a supporter.

Zabaletta, a fellow former City stalwart, appeared to take issue with Sterling’s reluctance and claimed the winger doesn’t deserve to be held in the same esteem as some of the club’s most successful recent players, despite his own major contributions.

‘For me, when I think of legends I say Aguero, Kompany, Silva,’ Zabaletta told Sky Sports. ‘Those guys are on a different level, that’s why they have a statue outside of the club.

‘Raheem has been great so we wish him of course all the best he went to a team that obviously that is a big contender for the Premier League.

Raheem Sterling is in contention to make his Chelsea debut against Charlotte (Picture: Getty)

‘I just wish him all the best he’s a great lad but for Man City always the most important thing for the fans are the players and when you come to this club you to give 100%.

‘And the moment you leave you need to talk nicely to the club you’ve been playing for and I wish he could behave in that way.’

Regardless of how City and their former players choose to remember him, Thomas Tuchel didn’t think twice about making Sterling his priority target this summer and cannot wait to work with him at close quarters.

‘He was the absolute number one for that position. I gave his name to Todd straight away,’ Tuchel told The Telegraph last week.

‘Every time we played against him, he’s horrible to play against, horrible!

‘The main point is his intensity and the amount of repetition of intensity that he delivers. This is simply outstanding over the last years.

‘He caused huge trouble when he played against us and once you dig in deeper into his data and not only statistics in his goal involvements, it’s outstanding.

‘It’s exactly what we need to raise the level of our players. That’s why we are so sure and that’s why he was, for us, top of the list.’