Liverpool’s Mamadou Sakho has backed his former teammate Raheem Sterling to be a success at Manchester City and has urged Reds fans to remember his contribution at Anfield.
Sterling inked a staggering 49 million pound deal in recent days and has flown in to Australia join his new City teammates ahead of their clash with Melbourne City on Queensland's Gold Coast.
In a quirk of scheduling, Sterling is based just an hour down the road from Liverpool’s Brisbane hotel.
Sakho, 25, however has stayed in touch with the England striker since his move and remains one of his biggest supporters.
“I spoke with him [Sterling] by text. He’s a very, very good guy and he’s my good friend," Sakho told Goal.com.
“I told him to enjoy for his career and for me I say to all the fans, don’t forget what he do for the club, because I know him and he gave 100% and we have to say thank you for that.”
Sterling is under huge pressure to live up to his price tag and at such a young age it won’t be easy.
So can he succeed under Pellegrini at City?
“I hope so for him because he’s a very good guy and very good player,” added Sakho.
Aussie fans may have a chance to see Sterling play when City face local Hyundai A-League opposition at Gold Coast’s Cbus Stadium this Saturday.
Meanwhile Liverpool have been feted across Brisbane since their arrival in the Queensland capital on Wednesday.
After two sessions on Wednesday they trained at Suncorp stadium on Thursday night ahead of Friday night’s clash with Brisbane Roar FC.
Reds trio Kolo Toure, Sakho and Sheyi Ojo were shown around Brisbane’s famous sporting precinct Caxton St by Rugby League legend Mal Meninga, himself a Reds fan for many years.
The street has been renamed “Anfield Road” for the duration of the Reds trip to Brisbane with shops and bars decked out in Reds flags and banners.
And while Toure quite literally ran from the cuddly koalas put up for a photo opp with the players, Sakho seemed more at home with the little visitors from a local zoo.
“I don’t know why he was so scared but I have to speak with him,” Sakho said with a chuckle while cuddling a koala.“It’s very nice … but I prefer to hold my daughter.”