25 Şubat 2008 Pazartesi

Steven Gerrard

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

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
(football)|captain of Liverpool and the
third-choice captain of the English national
football team|English national team (after David
Beckham and Michael Owen). He wears number 8
jersey 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 an exceptionally
complete football midfielder with great vision and
indefatigable energy. Often credited for his
blistering shots from long range, he excels in
both the defensive and offensive sectors of the

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 Football World Cup|World Cup
qualifying game in September 2001 against Germany
national football team|Germany (1-5 away victory).

Although approached by Chelsea F.C.|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 F.C.|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 Greece|Greek team
Olympiakos in the UEFA Champions League|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 on May 25, 2005. Unmarked
by the opposition, he headed one to the back of
the net and opened the scorebooks for Liverpool.
Minutes later, former 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

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 former
manager, Gerard Houllier, when he was invited into
the Youth Academy to investigate another player's
talent. The latter reportedly could not keep his
eyes off Gerrard however. At the end, when
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."

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

However, in July 2005, things spiraled downward
after an apparent breakdown in contract
negotiations between player and club. Reports
stated that Gerrard was about to leave Liverpool
and Chelsea F.C.|Chelsea were reported to have
tabled a British record bid of 32 million pounds
for the player which was ultimately rejected.
Throughout the debacle, Liverpool remained
insistent that they wanted Gerrard to stay. On
July 5, however, Gerrard stated publicly that he
wished to leave the Reds. However, in a dramatic
change of heart, Gerrard changed his mind the next
day and pledged his future to Liverpool. He also
apologised to the club's supporters and insisted
that there were no get-out clauses in the new
contract that he would be signing. On the morning
of July 8, Gerrard signed a new four-year deal
with Liverpool alongside fellow Liverpudlian and
teammate, Jamie Carragher.

Gerrard started the 2005-06 in English
football|2005-06 season with a bang consistently
finding the back of the net in Champions' League
qualifiers. He currently has 7 goals to his name.

On August 25 2005, Gerrard was named as UEFA's
Most Valuable Player for the 2004/05 Champions'
League season.

==Personal Life==

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

* 2000/01 League Cup
* 2000/01 FA Cup
* 2000/01 UEFA Cup
* 2001/02 Charity Shield
* 2001/02 European Super Cup
* 2002/03 League Cup
* 2004/05 UEFA Champions League|UEFA Champions'
* 2004/05 UEFA Champions League Most Valuable
Player|UEFA Champions' League Most Valuable Player
* 2005/06 European Super Cup

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succession box|title=PFA Young Player of the
Year|before=Harry Kewell |after=Craig
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