Raheem Sterling should not even be in consideration for Gareth Southgate’s England side on current form, former Chelsea star Pat Nevin has claimed following another disastrous outing under Graham Potter.
The Englishman made the switch from Manchester City to Chelsea over the summer to much fanfare, after feeling undervalued at the Etihad Stadium under Pep Guardiola, but it has been a horror start to his Blues career thus far.
With Thomas Tuchel shown the exit door just weeks into the season, and Chelsea as a side looking well off the pace, Sterling has been the subject of plenty of tactical tweaking from new boss Potter, with the 27-year-old having been deployed as a winger, striker, wing back and attacking midfielder during his short spell at Stamford Bridge.
“He’s got flexibility, ability and quality to play in several positions,” Potter said before the defeat by Brighton. “You’re constantly trying to find the right balance and the right solutions.”
However, his £45m man has so far returned just four goals in 16 appearances, and endured a horror show in their most recent 4-1 defeat to Brighton, losing the ball more than any other player on the pitch (18) and succeeding with just 13 of his 24 attempted passes before being taken off just after the hour mark.
And Nevin, who appeared 193 times for the Blues between 1983 and 1988, has warned that he is in danger of losing his World Cup place with his current form at club level.
“I’m watching Raheem Sterling right now and I’ve said that Graham Potter has got the best from every player since he has been there - with one exception,” the former Chelsea winger said on BBC Radio 5live.
“If he keeps playing the way he is right now, he’s not even a consideration for the World Cup.”
Of course, Sterling is almost certain to be in the 26 man squad heading to Qatar in less than a month’s time, but with the likes of Phil Foden, Mason Mount, Bukayo Saka and Jack Grealish all also likely to be included, his place in the starting XI could be in doubt.