Guardiola insists Sterling is free to leave.

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Pep Guardiola insists Raheem Sterling is free to leave if he wants to leave.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says that Raheem Sterling is free to go if he wants to.

Sterling earlier stated that he is open to leave the Etihad club and seek for more game time.

“I didn’t know it and I think the club neither,” he said. “Raheem is our player, hopefully he will [continue to] be an incredibly important player for us.

“I don’t know if he wants to play more game time like Riyad [Mahrez], who doesn’t play and he doesn’t complain, like João [Cancelo] doesn’t play and he doesn’t complain.

“Some players complain because they want to play all the time. I cannot assure them, I spoke to them many times about that – I cannot assure how many minutes each one plays. Always they have to speak on the pitch. Not Raheem, all of them.

“They know they are going to play minutes. I’m not a guy that plays only 11 players; all of them are involved.”

Guardiola says that if Sterling want to leave in search of game time he is free to leave. “What I want from Raheem and everyone is they have to be satisfied to be here and delighted to be in this club,” he said.

“If that’s not the case they are free to take the best decision for the player and his family. Not just Raheem, all of them want to play every game but I cannot assure them. They have to improve every training session and be there on the pitch and try to be happy there.

“Raheem played the final of the Champions League. He’s such an important player for us, many players are so important. But I have to treat Cole Palmer the same like Kevin De Bryune. Why should I treat Kevin De Bruyne differently than Cole Palmer? Both have parents, have friends …”

Sportscliffs        The Guardian

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