MELBOURNE • Manager Manuel Pellegrini believes that record signing Raheem Sterling will benefit from playing with the technical players in Manchester City's squad this season.
The former Liverpool player gave a glimpse of what he can bring to the 2014 English Premier League champions on Tuesday. He showed searing pace and linked well with Spanish star David Silva in a penalty shootout friendly win over Italy's AS Roma in Melbourne.
Sterling, the most expensive English footballer in history, took just 2min 17sec to open his account for the big-spending English club in the International Champions Cup at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
It was the 20-year-old's first game for City since his move from Liverpool last week in a five-year deal worth an initial £44 million (S$93 million) that could rise to £49 million.
Sterling played only the first half but, in that time, he showed Pellegrini why he will be an excellent acquisition for the Chilean's all-star squad when the new season kicks off next month.
"Good players link immediately (with others) when they know how to play," said Pellegrini.
"I think at the moment we've a complete midfield with very technical players.
"I think he (Sterling) will benefit from that so I am very happy with the future we are going to have with the team.
"He has the speed that we didn't have so he will be another different way of playing.
"I am sure he is the player that we need in our team, that's the reason why we bought him."
Sterling showed his explosive pace to swoop on a defence-splitting pass from Kelechi Iheanacho, leaving Roma goalkeeper Morgan de Sanctis flailing as he slotted the ball into the empty net.
He could get the chance to impress again when City attempt to win the three-way International Champions Cup tournament. They take on 10-time European champions Real Madrid in the final match at the MCG tomorrow.