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Steven Gerrard

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Steven Gerrard

Steven George Gerrard (born 30 May, 1980 in Whiston, Merseyside, England) is an English football player with Liverpool F.C..

Gerrard was raised on the Bluebell estate in Huyton, Merseyside. While attending Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School in West Derby, Liverpool, Gerrard was known to go on scouting trips to check out rival school teams. In 1994 whilst in Year 9, he was part of the Liverpool Boys squad and "almost" made it into England National School, a small blemish on his now successful career.

Gerrard is usually employed in a central midfield role, although he also sometimes plays as a right-sided midfielder and, occasionally, right back. He is currently the captain of Liverpool and the third-choice captain of the English national team (after David Beckham and Michael Owen). He wears the number 8 for Liverpool and number 4 for England. It is widely thought that the club captaincy was handed to Gerrard in 2003/4 season so that he could inspire his teammates, and to compel him to take responsibility for his own indifferent disciplinary record, which apparently worked as in the 2003-2004 season he was only booked twice. Nevertheless, Steven Gerrard is a complete football midfield player with great vision and indefatigable energy. He excels in both the defensive and offensive sectors of the game.

Former Liverpool colleague, Michael Owen, also expressed relief at Gerrard being declared captain in 2003/04 in his autobiography as it most certainly took some pressure off Owen's shoulders.

Gerrard was one of three Liverpool players that scored in the famous World Cup qualifying game in September 2001 against Germany (1-5 away victory).

Although approached by Chelsea to sign for them during the summer of 2004, he rejected them but instead chose to stay at Liverpool. It is known that he was on the brink of signing for Chelsea but was persuaded to stay because of his family and friends. The arrival of new Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez also played a part in his decision.

A foot injury sustained against rivals Manchester United on 20 September 2004 ruled him out of first team football until late November 2004.

On 8 December 2004, Gerrard scored a stunning 25-yard piledriver against Greek team Olympiakos in the Champions League. Liverpool needed to win by two clear goals to progress to the last 16 of the competition. They were 1-0 down at half-time, but scored two goals before Gerrard secured their place with their third. He has since claimed that this was his best, if not his most important, goal for Liverpool to date.

Another goal Liverpool supporters are sure to remember is his contribution during the Champions League Final in Istanbul 2005. Unmarked by the opposition, he headed one to the back of the net and opened the scorebooks for Liverpool. Minutes later, teammate Vladimir Smicer would score again for the Reds. Gerrard was also crucial in the winning of a penalty against AC Milan when he was fouled in the penalty area. Xabi Alonso scored from a rebound, having his penalty saved initially to make it 3-3.

In the 2004-05 season, Gerrard scored 12 goals in all competitions; a season's personal best for him.

Gerrard is widely regarded as one of the best players in the current Liverpool squad, if not the best. He has only played club football with Liverpool, coming up through the ranks right up to the first team. His talent was spotted by ex-manager Gerard Houllier when Houllier was invited into the Youth Academy to investigate another player's talent. Houllier reportedly could not keep his eyes off Gerrard however. When at the end, Houllier was asked if he wanted the other player, he is reported to have said: "I'll take Gerrard now, but I'll consider the other guy and give you a verdict soon."

Despite loyalty for his hometown club and Liverpool reaching the European Champions League final, his future is widely speculated about. Gerrard has repeatedly maintained that he would re-assess his career and future after the final of May 25, 2005.

Having successfully lifted the trophy by leading Liverpool back from a 3-0 deficit to beat AC Milan 3-2 on penalties, his decision remains to be known. However, he did give a hint of his future when he spoke to the press after the finals: "How can I leave after a night like this?"

Liverpool fans across the world are hopeful that he will stick to his word, but with offers from clubs like Chelsea and the prospect of regular Champions League football, it may be very hard to resist the tempation to follow in the footsteps of Michael Owen and leave the club he has grown up with.

Personal Life

Gerrard is currently engaged to girlfriend, Alex Curran, who is also from Merseyside. They've been engaged since 2004 and have been seeing each other since 2002. They have a daughter, Lilly-Ella, born in 2004.

Honours


Preceded by:
Harry Kewell
PFA Young Player of the Year
2001
Succeeded by:
Craig Bellamy

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