Liverpool’s title triumph has helped Steven Gerrard bury his demons
The Premier League was the one club trophy that eluded the former Liverpool captain
Steven Gerrard finished second in the Premier League with Liverpool on three occasions. File photograph: Getty Images
The league championship was the one club trophy that eluded the former Liverpool captain during his illustrious playing career, with his infamous slip against Chelsea in 2014 contributing to the near-miss under Brendan Rodgers. Gerrard also finished second with Liverpool in 2002 and 2009 but he insists that anguish has been alleviated by the achievement of Jürgen Klopp’s side this season.
In the latest Match of the Day: Top 10 podcast, the Rangers manager says: “First and foremost, for me it was fantastic to bury a few demons; not all the demons but obviously from it was certainly a big relief. Being a Liverpool fan and ex-player I’ve known the big, long wait and I’m still in touch with a lot of the players that are in that dressing room so a lot of them shared that pain with me.
“It was fantastic for everyone connected to the club but it was mixed emotions in many ways because of my own experiences, being a fan and ex-player and a lot of my family are Liverpool fans as well. To be honest with you, I’m still on a really big high watching all of the TV coverage and seeing all of the emotions flying about.”
Gerrard credits the signings of Virgil van Dijk and Alisson as transforming Liverpool into a world-class team under Klopp. “I think Liverpool were a good team and exciting team before Van Dijk and the keeper came, but they’ve just absolutely turned them into a world-class side and the jigsaw is complete with those two.”
The former England captain told the podcast he had “a lot of regrets” over his international career and believes a strong manager would have accomplished more than Sven-Göran Eriksson, Steve McClaren, Fabio Capello and Roy Hodgson. “Looking back, we needed a manager who was bigger than all of those individual players,” he said.
“There was managers available at the time, for example Rafa Benítez, but he might not wanted to have been an international manager at that time. I look at managers now that are bigger than the team: Klopp, Mourinho and Guardiola. I think someone like that who was above the golden generation who was prepared to make the tough decisions would have got more out of that group of players.” - Guardian