Sterling withdrawn from Liverpool squad as City switch edges closer

Liverpool have removed Raheem Sterling from their pre-season tour plans, as Manchester City close in.

Raheem Sterling has been withdrawn from Liverpool's squad for the club's pre-season tour of Asia and Australia.

Perform understands the winger will remain in England as talks continue over a highly anticipated switch to Premier League rivals Manchester City, who have already had two bids turned down.

Sterling had initially been included in Brendan Rodgers' squad for the warm-up fixtures, but an Anfield exit now looks to be edging closer following a protracted contract saga.

With Sterling's deal set to expire in 2017, the winger missed a number of the club's training sessions last week due to illness.

And reports on Sunday suggest City have tabled a £45million bid to land their prime target.

Sterling arrived at Liverpool from QPR in 2010 and has won 16 England caps.