Sterling, who grew up in Wembley, started at QPR before joining Liverpool in 2010, aged 15.
He said: “I loved every minute of it. It was probably the best thing that could happen – changing my space, going into a new environment. It was like God gave me a new beginning."
Sterling, 24, revealed he was in some dangerous situations growing up in the capital, which he moved to from Jamaica aged five.
He said: “You grow up in some of these areas and at any moment, something can kick off. You have kids and they might see you're from a different area and want to take something off you.
“You think, 'No, I'm not giving it to you' and it gets out of hand for no reason. There have been many times in London when things have got sticky."