It is simply ridiculous for a man of Steven Gerrard’s caliber to be doubted. Gerrard is one of the best footballers (a complete player) of his generation with everything in his armour. Pass, shoot, tackles, headers, goals, vision, strength…you name it, he has got it all. It would not surprise me if we put him in goal and he takes Pepe’s place too. He is a world class midfielder and he will be vital for everything Liverpool will do next season. Every footballer goes through a rough patch in their career and yes we played better football towards the second half of the season when Gerrard was injured but this certainly does not mean we are a better team without Steven Gerrard. We can only get better and stronger with him coming back into the team and we should be optimistic about how good we can get having him back rather than dwelling on the negatives. I think Stevie will be back with all guns blazing and the contributing factors will be:
1) Fitness : After his groin operation which was a successful one last season, he is claiming he feels fitter than ever and very confident about his physical condition. This is brilliant news for Liverpool because these niggling injuries have certainly taken their toll over him and he has not been performing to his capability. If he is as fit as he is claiming and is to have a strong season appearance wise, it will certainly help our cause to finish in the top 4 and higher.
2) Mentality : This break from football, the longest since he made his debut for LFC at the young age of 18 was a much needed one. Physically he seemed drained but he needed a break from football mentally as well. It takes a lot mentally playing week in week out for as long as he has done and this break can only do him a world of good. Having a wee bit more time for his social life can only benefit him. He will be back fresher not only in terms of his physical fitness but also fresher and sharper in terms of mentality.
3) Motivation : Motivation plays a major role in a footballer’s performance and with King Kenny at the helm we can rest assure that there will be no lack of motivation (which happened during Roy’s 6 months in charge). There will be a burning desire to go all out and achieve what has eluded the Anfield trophy cabinet over the past to two decades and what we believe is our birth right. I am not saying Steven Gerrard lacks that motivation but simply stating that there will be that extra bit of it with Kenny back and with everything that has happened surrounding the club.
4) Transfers : One world class player can only do so much in a team sport like football. There have been times when Steive has single handedly lifted the team to victory most famously in Istanbul(05) and Wembley(07). Adding a few more top players this summer will take the burden and responsibility from Gerrard which can only be better for him and the team ultimately. This will be a major factor in our title charge.