Chelsea forward Raheem Sterling will miss England’s World Cup last-16 clash against Senegal due to a family issue, it has been announced.
Sterling started England’s first two games at Qatar 2022 and scored his first World Cup goal in the 6-2 win over Iran. He was an unused substitute against Wales.
But he may miss the rest of the tournament, even if England do make it past Senegal on Sunday, after it was announced in a tweet that he is dealing with a family problem.
“Raheem Sterling is not available for selection for the Three Lions tonight as he is dealing with a family matter,” England said on Twitter.
The Sun later reported that Sterling’s home had been burgled. And after England’s 3-0 win over Senegal, Gareth Southgate confirmed the player would be returning home. He also admitted that he did not know whether the 27-year-old would be available later on in the tournament.
Raheem Sterling is not available for selection for the #ThreeLions tonight as he is dealing with a family matter. pic.twitter.com/CR6cU8J0wE
“It’s a situation that he needs time with his family to deal with and I don’t want to put him under any pressure with that,” Southgate said.
“Sometimes football isn’t the most important thing and family should come first.”
And he added: “He’s going to go and deal with that matter. And then we will have to take it from there really.”
Sterling has scored 20 goals in 81 appearances for England and has been a key player under Southgate.