Liverpool Balls: Don’t worry Raheem Sterling drugs never did David Cameron any harm
The Daily Raheem Sterling delivers a bumper crop of news and views in the tabloids. Today Sterling coverage reaches peak tabloid as The Liverpool players is all over the Sun’s front and back pages.
On the front page we see a photo of Raheem holding an orange balloon to his lips. It’s party time, but there’s no jelly and ice-cream to go with this balloon. The Sun says Sterling is inhaling not exhaling. It says the balloon is “apparently filled with dangerous legal high ‘hippy crack'”. Inside the Sun, over two pages, we learn that the image comes from a short video in which Sterling inhales twice before he “seems to pass out”.
The Sun adds: “The footage is thought to have been filmed at his £1.5m home days before Liverpool’s Premier League clash with Newcastle”.
Apparenly. Seems. Thought. So much for the facts. What else do we know? Well, the Sun’s doctor Carol Cooper tells us that nitrous oxide, which is the more official name for ‘hippy crack’, can cause hallucinations and cause the user to lapse into a coma.
Another side-effect of the legal gas is that it can trigger fits of the “giggles”.
But don’t laugh because “there have been 17 deaths linked to nitrous oxide in the past decade”. Sky News says this is true, although it has not been proven that the actual gas led directly to those deaths. For instance, one person named as a victim inhaled the drug and drowned. Another was an habitual user of gases and had taken other drugs.
A drugs experts then says that Sterling is a (aaaaaah!) “role mode” who has “really let down those young people who look up him”. No. Raheem Sterling is a footballer. Your parents, grandparents and older siblings are role models. Liverpool’s Raheem Sterling is a talented athlete. End of.
Of course, inhaling nitrous oxide isn’t the healthy option. But this rush to shame and condemn Sterling the footballer is odd when we know that non-footballers who have smoked illegal drugs can achieve great things, such as rising to the dizzy heights of Home Secretary and Prime Minister.
This story is as much about attacking football, footballers and football fans as it is about consenting adult Raheem Sterling larking about in what should be the privacy of his own home.
Sterling has committed no crime. He’s a 20-year-old dicking about with his friends, one of whom seems to have filmed the antics and grassed him up.
You might wonder why this video should emerge now, with Sterling looking for a possible exit from Liverpool?
PS: Sterling scored a terrific goal last night in Liverpool’s 2-0 win over a lacklustre Newcastle United.