Raheem Sterling has hit out at the coverage he receives in the British press, describing it at degrading and suggesting it is based on stereotypes of black people.
The Manchester City and England winger believes he is unfairly portrayed as flashy and blingy largely because he is black.
The 24-year-old says he is actually quite the opposite of those accusations and he has been given these labels through laziness and prejudice. From the very start of my career, there has been a perception of a flashy kid from London: loves cars, loves the flashy lifestyle,’ Sterling told the New York Times.
I’m not saying I’m a saint or anything, but that is the complete opposite of who I am. These people do not know me. They will define me by what they read about me; that is how they will treat me. When people are making the public believe you are a character you aren’t, that is hurtful, and it is degrading.
Sterling has already won 47 caps for his country, but believes that the English press treat him differently due to the colour of his skin. Whenever you see a report on a black player or a black entertainer it has to end up with money, or bling, or cars, or something flashy. With a successful white person, it is nice, short, sweet, what a lovable person.
It is a stereotype of black people: chains and jewelry, bling and money. These are words that are associated with black people. If I was showing 10 cars on my driveway, if I was on Instagram biting my gold chain, or with two Rolexes on, you can call me flashy. But you can’t label me as that if I am not portraying that.
The England international has been in fabulous form again this season, scoring a hat-trick on Saturday to take his tally to 15 Premier League goals for the campaign and 18 in all competitions.