Steven George Gerrard is an English professional former footballer. He spent the majority of his playing career as a central midfielder for Liverpool and the England national team, with most of that time spent as club captain. Regarded as one of the greatest midfielders of his generation, Gerrard was awarded the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year award in 2005, and the Ballon d’Or Bronze Award. In 2009, Zinedine Zidane and Pelé said that they considered Gerrard to be the best footballer in the world. A versatile and well-rounded player, highly regarded for his leadership, Gerrard is the only footballer in history to score in an FA Cup Final, a League Cup Final, a UEFA Cup Final and a UEFA Champions League Final, winning on each occasion. Born and raised in Whiston, Merseyside, Gerrard joined the Liverpool Academy at age 9, after being noticed by scouts. At age 17, he signed his first professional contract with Liverpool and made his senior debut a year later in 1998. In the 2000-01 season, Gerrard helped Liverpool secure a treble of the League Cup, the UEFA Cup and the FA Cup. A UEFA Super Cup and another League Cup followed, and Gerrard was appointed team captain in 2003. In 2005, Gerrard led Liverpool to a historic fifth European title, scoring a crucial late goal in the group stages, and being named Man of the Match as he scored Liverpool’s first goal and won the penalty kick for the third as Liverpool came from 3–0 down to defeat Milan in what became known as the Miracle of Istanbul, regarded as one of the greatest finals in the history of the tournament. In his 17 seasons at Anfield, Gerrard won a total of two FA Cups, three League Cups, one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Cup, and one UEFA Super Cup. He was named in the PFA Team of the Year a record eight times, the UEFA Team of the Year and FIFA World XI three times, was named PFA Players’ Player of the Year in 2006 and the FWA Footballer of the Year in 2009 and came second to Kenny Dalglish in a Liverpool fan poll of “100 Players Who Shook The Kop” in 2008. Despite collective and individual success, Gerrard never won the Premier League, finishing runner-up with Liverpool on three occassions. He joined Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy in July 2015, spending one-and-a-half seasons there before retiring on 24 November 2016. At international level, Gerrard is the fourth-most capped player in the history of the England national team with 114 caps, scoring 21 goals. Gerrard made his international debut in 2000, and represented his country at the 2000, 2004 and 2012UEFA European Football Championships, as well as the 2006, 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups, captaining the team for the latter two tournaments. He was named as the permanent England captain shortly before UEFA Euro 2012, where he was named in the UEFA Team of the Tournament. Gerrard won his 100th cap in 2012, becoming the sixth player to reach that milestone for England. Gerrard announced his retirement from international football on 21 July 2014.
“Is he the best in the world? He might not get the attention of Messi and Ronaldo but yes, I think he just might be. He has great passing ability, can tackle and scores goals, but most importantly he gives the players around him confidence and belief. You can’t learn that – players like him are just born with that presence” Zinedine Zidane
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Gerrard made his international debut against Ukraine on 31 May 2000. That summer, he was called up for Euro 2000, making only one appearance as a substitute in a 1–0 win over Germany before England were eliminated in the group stage. Gerrard scored his first international goal in the famous 5–1 victory over Germany in a 2002 World Cup qualifier in September 2001, and while England qualified, Gerrard was forced to pull out of the squad due to his ongoing groin problems after pulling up in Liverpool’s final match of the season against Ipswich.
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Gerrard was made vice-captain of the England team by coach Steve McClaren, and while he filled in for John Terry as captain, England suffered back-to-back losses to Russia and Croatia that ended their Euro 2008 qualifying hopes. After new coach Fabio Capello took over the team in early 2008, Gerrard was given a trial run as captain but Capello settled on Terry for the role. Gerrard was subsequently replaced as England vice-captain by Rio Ferdinand. Gerrard helped England qualify for the 2010 World Cup, scoring two goals in England’s 5–1 win over Croatia. John Terry was replaced by Rio Ferdinand as captain in 2010, following revelations about the former’s private life, and Gerrard subsequently became vice-captain again. When the England team left for the 2010 World Cup, Gerrard was the most experienced player in the squad with 80 caps. During preparations for the 2010 FIFA World Cup, however, Rio Ferdinand was injured, meaning that Gerrard was appointed by Capello as captain for the tournament. After the tournament Gerrard, part of a group of England players dubbed the “Golden Generation”, confirmed that he would continue to be available for selection, despite suggestions from Capello that he would seek to re-build the team. In August 2010, Gerrard scored twice in a friendly match against Hungary and helped England to a 2–1 win. Due to Ferdinand’s continued absence through injury, Gerrard retained the captaincy for the opening match of the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign against Bulgaria, which England won 4–0. He was later named permanent captain by new coach Roy Hodgson, in time for the tournament finals. This was the first time that he was named directly the captain of England and not in place of an injured or unavailable captain
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The 2001 UEFA Cup Final was a football match between Liverpool of England and Alavés of Spain on 16 May 2001 at the Westfalenstadion in Dortmund, Germany. The showpiece event was the final match of the 2000–01 edition of Europe’s secondary cup competition, the UEFA Cup. Liverpool were appearing in their third UEFA Cup final, after their appearances in 1973 and 1976. It also represented the first European final they reached since being banned from Europe following the Heysel Stadium disaster. Alavés were appearing in their first European final. Watched by a crowd of 48,050, Liverpool took an early lead when Markus Babbel scored in the fourth minute. They extended their lead in the 16th minute when Steven Gerrard scored. Midway through the first half, Iván Alonso scored to bring Alavés within a goal of levelling the match. A few minutes before the end of the first half, Liverpool went 3–1 up when Gary McAllister scored from the penalty spot. Minutes after the start of the second half, Javi Moreno scored twice to level the match at 3–3. Liverpool went in front again in the 76th minute when Robbie Fowler scored. With a minute remaining in the match, Alavés equalised thanks to Jordi Cruyff. The match went into extra time, with the first half goalless. With the match heading for a penalty shoot-out, Delfí Geli headed into his own net; as a result, Liverpool won on the golden goal rule. The victory meant Liverpool completed a Treble of Football League Cup, FA Cup and UEFA Cup.
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Born and raised in Whiston, Merseyside, Gerrard joined the Liverpool Academy at age 9, after being noticed by scouts. At age 17, he signed his first professional contract with Liverpool and made his senior debut a year later in 1998. In the 2000-01 season, Gerrard helped Liverpool secure a treble of the League Cup, the UEFA Cup and the FA Cup. In this season he made fifty starts in all competitions and scored ten goals as he won his first major honours with Liverpool – the FA Cup, Football League Cup, and the UEFA Cup. Gerrard was also voted PFA Young Player of the Year for his key part in one of the most successful season’s in Liverpool’s 109-year history.
Uefa Cup Final
Liverpool vs Alaves
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In the 2000/2001 season Liverpool enjoyed its best season for years when they completed a unique treble of cup competitions and ended Gérard Houllier’s three-year wait to bring silverware to Anfield. The team won the League Cup, UEFA Cup and FA Cup treble.
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A versatile and well-rounded player who is regarded as one of the best midfielders of his generation, Gerrard was capable of playing in a number of positions. A hardworking box-to-box player, he was usually deployed as a central midfielder, but he had also been used as a second striker, a holding midfielder, an attacking midfielder, a right back, and a right winger. Gerrard began his professional career as a wide midfielder on the right, although he did not excel in this position as he had a tendency to commit careless fouls in his youth. Nevertheless, Liverpool retained their faith in the youngster, and he was later shifted to a defensive midfield position as he matured, where he excelled as a ball-winner rather than as a playmaker. He continued to evolve tactically, coming into his own in a box-to-box central midfield role, which allowed him to be effective both offensively and defensively. Under Benítez, he was also used in a supporting and creative role, as an attacking midfielder behind the strikers, or even as a deep-lying playmaker. In addition to creating goals, Gerrard, naturally right footed, had the ability to score goals due to his striking ability from distance with both feet. As he entered his mid 30s and his physical capability to get forward and join the attack declined, the number of long range strikes at goal decreased, with most of his goals coming from free kicks and penalty kicks. Renowned for his pace, work-rate and stamina in his prime, his main attributes in his later career were his vision, ball striking, and his accurate, varied passing range, which allowed him to set the tempo of his team’s play and create attacking chances from midfield. He also possessed good technical and aerial ability, as well as notable defensive attributes. In particular, Gerrard’s tactical intelligence and ability to read the game allowed him to break down the opposition’s attacking plays. In addition to his footballing attributes, Gerrard was highly regarded for his leadership, determination, and influence on the pitch throughout his career.
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Gerrard has had several different sponsorships in his career including current deals with Adidas, Jaguar Cars and Lucozade. In 2014, Forbes listed his combined income from salaries, bonuses and off-field earnings at $17.2 million for the previous 12 months.While Gerrard has worn several football boots during his career, he first wore a pair of Nike boots on his Liverpool debut, but soon signed a deal with Adidas in 1998 and has gone on to appear in a number of Adidas commercials with the likes of Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham, Lionel Messi and Kaká. Gerrard has worn ten versions of the Adidas Predator boot, with the Accelerator being the first, and throughout his career he has been one of the brand’s major boot endorsees. In 2013, Gerrard switched boot silos to the Nitrocharge 1.0 first wearing the boots in the League Cup clash against rivals Manchester United on 25 September 2013.