Raheem Sterling: Facing Liverpool at Wembley 'strictly business'
Manchester City midfielder Raheem Sterling says he will not be distracted when he lines up against his former club in the Capital One Cup final, next month.
The winger helped City overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit against Everton to win 4-3 on aggregate in Wednesday's semifinal second leg. The result pits the 21-year-old against his former club, where he remains a controversial figure after his protracted £49 million transfer to the Etihad Stadium in the summer of 2015.
Asked whether he expected to receive some text messages from his former teammates before the Wembley final on Feb. 28, Sterling told Sky Sports News he would be focused on lifting his first trophy in a City shirt.
"I might get one or two, but it's strictly business when it comes to Wembley," Sterling told Sky Sports. "This is what I've been wanting to do. I've come here and I'm lucky enough to be in a final.
"It's really well done to Liverpool as well -- they've got into a final. We'll meet in the final and may the best team win on the day."
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Sterling was involved in a crucial moment in Wednesday's semifinal, when the ball appeared to be out of play before he pulled it back for Kevin De Bruyne to score City's second goal. But he felt it levelled the playing field after he was bundled over in the penalty area in the first leg at Goodison Park with, controversially, no penalty given.
"I was only interested in the ball hitting the back of the net," Sterling said. "I wasn't looking if it was out or not. The most important thing is we got the luck this time."
"Last time we didn't get a penalty, this time it might have been out or not, but the most important thing is we scored and won the game at the end of the day."
Tom is ESPN FC's Liverpool correspondent. Follow him @writertombell.