Raheem Sterling has gone AWOL from Liverpool after failing to show up to club training, leading to an angry Liverpool fan posting his phone number online and initiating a barrage of abuse.
After it was reported that Sterling had refused to join the club in their tour of the Far East and Australia while he attempts to see through a deal with Manchester City, he has now failed to show up to Liverpool’s training ground after allegedly butting heads with manager Brendan Rodgers. With Liverpool fans angered by his actions, they used his personal phone number to send abhorrent and allegedly racist abusive messages to the England international, with the Mirror reporting that a fan posted his phone number alongside the message: “Give this #LFC scumbag #Raheem #Sterling a phone call with as much abuse as possible!!”
A majority of the abuse was sent to Sterling via WhatsApp, though there have also been multiple reports of offensive messages being sent to the player using Twitter. The social networking site has reportedly stated it is working to shut down the accounts of those involved.
Liverpool are set to send a doctor out to Sterling in order to see if his claims that he missed training due to illness are true, though it is suspected that his absence is due to the club rejecting bids for his transfer to Manchester City, with them reportedly holding out for an offer of £50 million from their Premier League rivals.
The 20-year-old has routinely been in the news over the past few months, with rumours of his imminent transfer being matched by reports regarding his use of laughing gas, behaviour which Brendan Rodgers condemned.
It remains to be seen how Liverpool will respond to Sterling’s absence from training and his refusal to accompany the club on their tour, but if he is deemed guilty of any wrongdoing it seems likely than it would harm negotiations regarding his move away from the club.