Liverpool Balls: Failing Steven Gerrard Needs To Join Manchester City
TRANSFER Balls: First Manchester City came for Chelsea’s Frank Lamaprd. Now they are coming for Liverpool’s Steven Gerrard.
In “Tug Of War” Martin Hardy writes in the Sunday Times:
MANUEL PELLEGRINI is ready to spark a fight for the services of Steven Gerrard, the Liverpool captain. Gerrard, who played poorly in his side’s 1-0 defeat at Newcastle United yesterday, has admitted there is uncertainty regarding his future at Anfield, with his contract set to run out at the end of the season.
What did the affable Manchester City manager say?
“I don’t ever rate players on their age. It depends on the money they cost and the number of years they have [on their contract]. But like Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard is a top player and he can continue at a high level for a couple more years.”
Gerrard is 34.
But Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers needs Gerrard to stay. Without him, who leads the Reds?
“I had a meeting with Steven’s representative explaining the situation. I very much want him to be a part of what we are doing here. He’s been a brilliant captain for me. I relayed that to the ownership. I’m sure he will go away with that and hopefully his representative will organise a deal. Steven is very much part of what I’m doing here. He’s a unique player, a unique talent.”
But Gerrard is no fool. He wants to win something big. And Manchester City offer him more chance of that than Liverpool. In 2005, he told everyone of his plan to quit Anfield. Chelsea and much silver beckoned:
“The last six weeks have been the toughest of my life and the decision I have come to has been the hardest decision I have ever had to make. I fully intended to sign a new contract after the Champions League Final but the events of the past five or six weeks have changed all that. I have too much respect for the club and the people at it to get involved in a slagging match.”
“Steven has told us he will not accept our offer of an improved and extended contract because he wants to leave,” a Liverpool club statement read.
Does Garrard have any regrets on staying at Liverpool? He said in 2013:
“They [Chelsea] tried [to complete the move] on two occasions in 2005 and 2006. I am Liverpool man through and through but I have to admit it did turn my head, because big things were happening at Chelsea. They were spending huge amounts of money and at Liverpool at the time we were struggling and my relationship with [Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez] was a bit up and down. I have openly admitted that it did turn my head, but now I can honestly admit from the bottom of my heart the best decision I have made was to stay at the club that I love.”
But Gerrard is not playing well. Heart cannot rule head. In July 2013, Rodgers said:
“I think he’s still got a good few years left yet. His level of performance last year was outstanding.”
That was then. As was this, as reported by the Mail in 2004:
Steven Gerrard’s record-breaking transfer to Chelsea has been derailed because of a hate campaign directed at his family by Liverpool fans furious at the prospect of losing their captain and best player.
Would Liverpool fans become Gerrard’s departure now? Not if they have a decent leader in waiting…