Lack of Guidance presents Raheem on a Sterling

Lack of Guidance presents Raheem on a Sterling

Two summers ago, while Brexit was laying bare some of the more unsavoury elements of British society - flourished an England football team built on everything that is Great about Britain. Young, diverse, dynamic and completely at ease with themselves and the nation they were representing. Showcasing England to the the world - and unifying the country - in a way that their politicians could only dream of.

At the heart of this was a 24 year-old, from the St Raphael’s estate in north-west London, Raheem Sterling. Who since that summer of love has transcended his performances on the pitch, by becoming an eloquent spokesperson - against racism in stadiums and within the pages of the nation's tabloid newspapers.

Well, football fashionistas – Lack of Guidance have honoured Raheem Sterling as England’s finest by putting Sterling’s head on a tenner - or Sterling on sterling if you will. Because his commitment to pushing a positive agenda and giving young England fans, of all backgrounds, class and colour, the hero they deserve - is something we can all be proud of.



The idea, which came around back in March 2019, and during the development process, LoG were informed of an incredible charity using the power of football to support disadvantaged young people in the UK. So, they ended up making 10 unique banknotes with these kids that all look incredible.

Fast forward to May 2020, there’s a global pandemic, no football on TV and the killing of George Floyd has sparked a global discussion on racism. Never before has it been so clear which side someone was on. Never had the world felt so divided as people on both sides continued to shout louder and louder.

Concerned about the potential for negative backlash from right-wing extremists, the organisation decided to withdraw itself from the project. Not because they didn’t support the message, but to protect the kids from anything that might harm them.



Lack of Guidance said:

“For a while, we didn’t even know whether we wanted to proceed or not. But even though the stadiums remain largely empty, we wanted to do our part in shedding light on the racism that is still present within the game, the media and our institutions. That’s why we still want to take action and get this message out there.

Even though we were a bit disappointed when the charity backed out, we fully understand and support their stance. In fact, we will donate all profits to this group, because ever since we met them, we believe they run one of the best organisations on the planet. In order for us to use the imagery that was already shot at this point, the only condition was to make the kids unrecognisable.”



Fast forward and LoG organised a series of workshops where they asked young people to design a £10 banknote with Raheem’s face on it.

After digitising the designs, another workshop took place in which the designs were printed on paper made of recycled newspapers. Not just regular newspapers, but strictly newspapers with negative reports about Raheem Sterling. By doing this, LoG wanted to demonstrate that you can take something negative and turn it into something positive.



The project is comprised of 10 unique banknotes, each of them professionally framed in an American walnut frame and UV70 Museum Glass, mounted on an acid-free museum board.

The framed banknotes will be auctioned on until Monday, December 21st. For the ones that can’t wait that long, the banknotes are also available at a fixed price of €500. Also, each design is available on a black T-shirt as well, retailing for €50 through our website.

All profits will go to an organisation that uses the power of football to support disadvantaged young people in the UK.


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