Having announced his decision to leave Liverpool at the end of the season, Steven Gerrard also admits he intends to return to the club in the future.
The Reds captain has been at Anfield since linking up with their youth scheme in 1987, and signed his first professional contract with the club a decade later at the age of 17. After making his first team debut the following season, he soon established himself as a key member of their midfield and was appointed skipper in 2003; a position he has held on to for well over a decade.
Gerrard has gone on to make a total of 686 appearances in all competitions for the Merseyside club, a figure which is bettered only by Ian Callaghan (857) and Jamie Carragher (737), whilst he is sixth in their all-time goalscoring charts with 177. In terms of honours, he has helped his boyhood club to 10 trophies, including two FA Cups and, most famously of all, the 2005 UEFA Champions League.
Now 34-years-old, it is no shame that Gerrard is no longer able to produce the type of performances which marked him out as one of the outstanding players of his era. It is no surprise, then, that he has decided to leave when his contract expires at the end of the current season, although he has also revealed that he aims to return to the club in some capacity in the future.
“This has been the toughest decision of my life and one which both me and my family have agonised over for a good deal of time,” said Gerrard. “Liverpool Football Club has been such a huge part of all our lives for so long and saying goodbye is going to be difficult, but I feel it’s something that’s in the best interests of all involved, including my family and the club itself.
“It is a very special place to be part of. It is my sincere hope and wish that one day I can return to serve Liverpool again, in whatever capacity best helps the club. My final message is for the people who make Liverpool Football Club the greatest in the world – the supporters. It has been a privilege to represent you, as a player and as captain. I have cherished every second of it.”
It is thought that Gerrard will head to the United States for the next phase of his career, with LA Galaxy, New York City and New York Red Bulls already mooted as potential destinations. But until that time comes, he is sure to continue to give his all for the Liverpool cause, as he looks to at least end his time at the club by leading them to a successive top-four Premier League finish.
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