The Manchester City forward says he doesn’t want play to resume unless it can be done safely for everybody involved
Raheem Sterling says he is concerned about “what the worst outcome could be” if the Premier League returns before it is safe.
“The moment we do go back it just needs to be a moment where it’s not just for footballing reasons, it’s safe for not just us footballers but the whole medical staff, referees,” Sterling said on his YouTube channel.
“I don’t know how that’s going to work, but I feel like once that side of the people’s safety and the players’ safety is secured and their wellbeing is looked after then that’s the right time to go back in.
“Until then, I’m… how can I say… not scared but reserved and thinking what the worst outcome could be.
“At the same time I’m looking forward to it and I really want to get back but hopefully it will all be well when we do get back.”
Sterling’s Manchester City team-mate Sergio Aguero has already made headlines with a frank interview where he admitted players were scared for the safety of their families.
The Bundesliga is set to return on May 16 but with the UK suffering from one of the worst coronavirus death rates in the world, there remains anxiety about the viability of doing so in England.
Indeed, German second-division side Dynamo Dresden have already been forced back into lockdown after positive coronavirus tests in their first-team squad.
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Tottenham left-back Danny Rose, currently on loan at Newcastle, said on Monday that plans to resume the league season are “b*llocks”, as “people’s lives are at risk”.
“The government is saying we are bringing football back because it is going to boost the nation’s morale,” he said in an Instagram live session.
“I don’t give a f*ck about the nation’s morale. People’s lives are at risk. Football shouldn’t even be spoken about coming back until the numbers have dropped massively.”