Okay, so the headline of this article may be a slightly sensational one, but it makes an important point – if Steven Gerrard is not careful he may end up leaving Anfield in May having done some damage to his reputation on Merseyside. For a player who is arguably the greatest ever Red, this is clearly not a desirable situation.
Obviously it is Gerrard’s actions on Sunday that have prompted this article, but put into the wider context of the season that the Liverpool skipper has had, there is genuinely some cause for concern.
For those that didn’t see it, Gerrard was brought on at half-time during Manchester United’s visit to Anfield – but just 38 seconds later, he was marching back off the pitch after being shown a red card for a stamp on Ander Herrera.
Although he later apologised, this was scant consolation for an act that almost certainly contributed towards a key loss at a crucial stage of the season – against Liverpool’s biggest rivals.
The question is: what was Gerrard thinking? The 34-year old showed an incredible lack of maturity in the stamp, especially given that he hadn’t even been on the field in the previous 45 minutes. His actions definitely contributed towards his side failing to extract any points from a vital game, and the skipper will now miss three fixtures.
Perhaps worst of all, Liverpool’s loss at home to United now leaves them five points adrift of the top four, and with only eight games to go, it seems unlikely that the Reds will qualify for the Champions League. Out of Europe and seemingly out of the Champions League race, Gerrard and Liverpool must focus on the FA Cup if they are not to be forced to write this season off as a failure.
For Gerrard, this is no way to end such an important career at the club he loves. The fact that the ‘one-club man’ is leaving for America is not ideal to begin with, and the more moves like this he makes, the less he will be cherished when he finally departs. The man has had a wonderful career at Anfield, but if he’s not careful, he could well leave with his reputation less than intact.