Rio Ferdinand says he’s ‘baffled’ by Raheem Sterling’s struggles at Man City after the forward drew another blank… and believes he has ‘lost confidence’ after being dropped by Pep Guardiola

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  • Raheem Sterling debuts in Manchester City’s goalless draw with Southampton
  • The forward scored a late goal, only to dismiss the goal, and struggled again.
  • Rio Ferdinand expresses confusion over how Sterling’s form has declined
  • He says the crisis in his confidence stemmed from his removal from the team

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Rio Ferdinand has revealed his confusion with Raheem Sterling’s poor form at Manchester City, and believes the winger’s difficult spell has started with his side being ruled out.

Sterling was fielded as a center forward for City in a goalless draw with Southampton over the weekend but struggled to impress in another performance that calls into question his future at the Etihad.

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Speculation is rife over a possible loan move for him in the winter transfer window, and Ferdinand has expressed sympathy for Sterling’s precarious position.

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Rio Ferdinand has expressed his confusion over Raheem Sterling’s struggles at Manchester City

Ferdinand said, ‘Merely because he has been dropped from the team has lost his confidence. vibe with five Display. ‘He was on fire. he was producing.

‘This guy was the go-to guy when they needed a goal for so many years. Suddenly, he is in the forest. I’m just amazed by this; I don’t understand it.

‘But it’s the same thing with Pepe’ [Guardiola], he fixes it more often, but with this one with Sterling… there will be club sitting, “Boy, let me see how this situation pans out because I’ll be carrying Sterling all day.”

Sterling started in City's goalless draw against Southampton but struggled to make an impact

Sterling started in City’s goalless draw against Southampton but struggled to make an impact

Ferdinand expressed his sympathy for Sterling, saying that the fall hurt his confidence

Ferdinand expressed his sympathy for Sterling, saying that the fall hurt his confidence

‘If I’m Liverpool, I’m buying sterling tomorrow.’

Sterling is enjoying a rich vein on international duty with England, having emerged as one of their most important players over the past year, but his luck with City is quite the opposite.

He’s got just two starts this season, and the champion has failed to hit the back of the net in both. Meanwhile, Jack Grealish, Ferran Torres and Riyad Mahrez have been named ahead of them.

Assessing Sterling’s performance in the recent stalemate, boss Guardiola said: ‘He was very active in terms of movement, but football a lot depends on how well we do the process in the build up and when If this happens then our striker and winger play better.

Sterling scored in the final leg against Southampton but his finish was called VAR.  rejected by

Sterling scored in the final leg against Southampton but his finish was called VAR. rejected by

‘And our attacking midfielder plays better and we struggled a bit today and that’s why he didn’t get much ball but he was always dangerous and ready to try to do that.’

Sterling’s frustration continued to grow after scoring a goal in the final stages of the clash against Southampton, only for his end to be dismissed by VAR.

An extension, despite the club’s interest in ending a stance, has signed a new deal at City. sportsmail has reported before.

The lack of fresh terms appears to have put some of the biggest clubs in the world on alert, and Barcelona have reportedly prioritized a loan sweep for January.

Pep Guardiola praised Sterling's movement over the weekend but was disappointed with the scoreline

Pep Guardiola praised Sterling’s movement over the weekend, but was disappointed with the scoreline

Play claimed that Sterling was also interested in moving to the Nou Camp, a desire that was born out of his apparent frustration at his lack of minutes.

The same outlet said Barcelona were trying to sign Sterling on a temporary basis over the summer, but their pursuit ultimately failed.

sportsmail It was also reported in May that City were open to offers for Sterling, but Guardiola has recently lauded the influence of his winger.

The front page of the Sport newspaper in Spain said that Sterling is Barcelona's priority target

Sterling has largely fallen out of favor with Guardiola and is said to be interested in the move

The front page of the newspaper Sport in Spain reports that Sterling is Barcelona’s priority target

‘Do you know how many incredible successes we had last season, yes?’ Guardiola said. Impossible without Rahim. He is such an important player.

‘But I’m here to tell them. He reached an incredibly high level and I must tell him that this is the standard we need, for you, for all of us.

‘And I’m pretty sure he’ll get it. If he is able to do it, he will. And I am very hopeful that he will have a wonderful season.

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