Former Liverpool and Manchester United striker Michael Owen believes that the club should "not lose sleep" over the departure of Raheem Sterling as they can sign a quality replacement thereafter.
Owen insists that the situation is not like that of Luis Suarez, who is irreplaceable and left a massive void in the Liverpool squad when he left the club to join Barcelona in the summer. Suarez had scored more than 30 league goals and had almost single-handedly led the Reds to their maiden league triumph in over two decades.
However, Sterling, though a precocious talent is still not at the same level as Suarez and given he is English would fetch a lot of money, which can be invested elsewhere. Arsenal, Manchester United and Manchester City are all interested in his signature, which can spill into a bidding war if the player is made available in the market.
The 20-year-old has refused to sign an extension on his current contract, which expires in 2017 and is believed to be pushing for a move to a club settled in the Champions League.
"I think he is a very good player but, put it this way, a year ago they lost [Luis] Suarez, he is irreplaceable, you cannot replace someone that good," said Owen.
"If Liverpool lose Sterling they can replace him. Certainly with the money that they would get I think you can replace Sterling.
"I think he's a very good player, got loads of potential, but you can replace him and you can't replace Suarez.
"If I was a Liverpool fan I would obviously want an answer, but I wouldn't be losing sleep if he did leave and you got a fair old chunk of money for him because I think he is replaceable," he added.
The Reds finished the season on sixth spot and have qualified for the Europa League which will commence in September 2015.