Gerrard 600 not out for Liverpool

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Steven Gerrard © Trinity Mirror

Steven Gerrard made his 600th appearance in a Liverpool shirt as the Reds were held to a 1-1 draw against Newcastle at Anfield.

Gerrard could not cap the landmark with a Premier League winner after Luis Suarez produced a sublime piece of skill to cancel out Newcastle’s first-half lead but the Liverpool skipper was as committed to the cause as ever.

His career began as a late substitute against Blackburn Rovers in 1998 and since then Huyton-born Gerrard has seen many highs and lows.

After making his debut as an 18-year-old he went on to represent his country just two years later, scoring his first international goal in a famous 5-1 victory against Germany.

In the same year, all before his 21st birthday, he helped Liverpool launch themselves back into limelight with a trophy haul including the FA Cup, UEFA Cup and League Cup at the end of the 2000/1 season.

On the 15th October 2003, the midfielder was given the captain’s armband by former boss Gerard Houllier.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ceNzjyeZbyk

While 2004 saw the departure of Houllier and the introduction of Rafael Benitez as Liverpool manager, the pre-season saw one of Gerrard’s low points in his career, as he considered a move away from the club he loved and had supported since a young child.

However, Chelsea’s advances could not tempt Gerrard away, who decided to stay at Anfield and he went on to have a career-defining season that saw him put in amazing individual performances that led his side to a Champions League win against AC Milan in Istanbul, in what was described one of the greatest comebacks ever.

Steven Gerrard

Despite the European title, he was once again swayed by league champions Chelsea, who almost secured a big- money move for the midfielder in the summer, only for Gerrard to pull out of the at 11th hour by signing a new contract for Liverpool.

He marked the signing of his contract with his first 20+ goal-haul and put in another talismanic performance to lift the FA Cup from the clutches of defeat against West Ham in 2006.

Gerrard continued to lead Liverpool from the front, adding 96 appearances and 45 goals to his already impressive tallies as well as runners-up finishes in both the Champions League and Premier League… the only domestic title to elude him.

As the midfielder reaches the twilight years of his career he has been blighted by injury seeing him miss large chunks of the previous seasons but still remaining in his manager’s first team plans whenever he is fit. He has managed to rack up his 150th club goal under new manager Brendan Rodgers, and has been named captain of the national side under manager Roy Hodgson.

About Joe Barnes, JMU Journalism