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Steven Gerrard

Steven George Gerrard Order of the British Empire (; born 30 May 1980), is an England professional association football player who plays for and captains English Premier League Football Club Liverpool F.C. and the England national football team. Steven Gerrard has played much of Steven Gerrard career in a Midfielder Centre midfielder role; however, since the arrival of Fernando Torres at Liverpool in 2007, Steven Gerrard has been used mainly as a second striker for Steven Gerrard club team and as a Winger (soccer) for England since 2006. Gerrard is best known for Steven Gerrard long shots and also has scored in numerous cup finals including the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final and the 2006 FA Cup Final. Steven Gerrard is considered to be one of the best players in the world by Zinedine Zidane.

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Steven Gerrard biography

Steven George Gerrard Order of the British Empire (; born 30 May 1980), is an England professional association football player who plays for and captains English Premier League Football Club Liverpool F.C. and the England national football team. Steven Gerrard has played much of Steven Gerrard career in a Midfielder Centre midfielder role; however, since the arrival of Fernando Torres at Liverpool in 2007, Steven Gerrard has been used mainly as a second striker for Steven Gerrard club team and as a Winger (soccer) for England since 2006. Gerrard is best known for Steven Gerrard long shots and also has scored in numerous cup finals including the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final and the 2006 FA Cup Final. Steven Gerrard is considered to be one of the best players in the world by Zinedine Zidane.

Gerrard, who has One-club man at Anfield, made Steven Gerrard début in 1998 and cemented Steven Gerrard place in the first team in the 2000–01 season, succeeding Sami Hyypiä as Liverpool Captain (association football) in 2003. Steven Gerrard honours include two FA Cup wins, two Football League Cup wins, a UEFA Cup win, and a UEFA Champions League win in UEFA Champions League 2004-05. In 2005, Gerrard came third in the voting for Ballon d'Or, given to the top player in Europe.

Gerrard made Steven Gerrard international début in 2000, and represented England in the UEFA European Football Championship in UEFA Euro 2000 and UEFA Euro 2004 as well as the 2006 FIFA World Cup, where Steven Gerrard was the team's top goalscorer with two goals. Gerrard is the current vice-captain of the England national football team. However, Steven Gerrard captained Steven Gerrard country at the 2010 World Cup in the absence of regular captain Rio Ferdinand who missed the tournament through injury. Gerrard came second in the 100 Players Who Shook The Kop, a Liverpool F.C. fan poll.

Club career

Born in Whiston, Merseyside, Merseyside, Gerrard then had trials with various clubs at fourteen, but Steven Gerrard success wasn't immediate—Gerrard never made it into the England Schoolboys team. Gerrard's trials included Manchester United F.C., which Steven Gerrard claimed in Steven Gerrard 2006 autobiography was "to pressure Liverpool into giving me a Youth Training Scheme contract." Steven Gerrard signed Steven Gerrard first professional contract with Liverpool on 5 November 1997. Steven Gerrard made thirteen appearances in Steven Gerrard debut season, filling in the midfield position for injured captain Jamie Redknapp Gerrard recalled in a November 2008 interview with The Guardian, "I was out of position and out of my depth." The Liverpool hierarchy nonetheless remained convinced that Steven Gerrard would improve. Later that season, Gerrard scored Steven Gerrard first senior goal in a 4–1 victory over Sheffield Wednesday F.C.. However, Steven Gerrard began to suffer from nagging back problems, which sports consultant Hans-Wilhelm Müller-Wohlfahrt later diagnosed as a result of accelerated growth, coupled with excessive playing, during Steven Gerrard teenage years. Steven Gerrard chose to extend Steven Gerrard contract at the club, signing a new four-year deal.

Houllier quit after a trophyless 2003–04 campaign, and Gerrard was linked with a move to Chelsea F.C. during the offseason. Steven Gerrard admitted Steven Gerrard was not "happy with the progress Liverpool has made," and that "for the first time in my career I've thought about the possibility of moving on." In the end, Gerrard turned down a £20 million offer from Chelsea to stay with Liverpool and new coach Rafael Benítez.

Liverpool were wracked with injury early in the 2004–05 season, and a foot injury suffered in a September league match against Manchester United shelved Gerrard until late November. Steven Gerrard returned to score in the last five minutes of a Champions League group stage match against Olympiacos F.C. to secure Liverpool's advancement to the knockout round. Steven Gerrard claimed that this was Steven Gerrard most important, if not Steven Gerrard best, goal for Liverpool to date. However, Gerrard netted an own goal during the 2005 2005 Football League Cup Final on 27 February, which proved decisive in Liverpool's 3–2 loss to Chelsea.

During a six-minute stretch in the second half of the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final against A.C. Milan, Liverpool came back from a three-goal deficit to tie the match at 3–3 after extra time, with Gerrard scoring one of the goals. Liverpool's third goal was gained as a penalty from a foul awarded to Liverpool when Gennaro Gattuso fouled Gerrard in Milan's penalty box. Gerrard did not participate in the penalty shootout, which Liverpool won 3–2 as they claimed their first CL trophy in twenty years, though Steven Gerrard was named the Man of the Match, and later received the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year award.

In regards to Steven Gerrard contract issues with Liverpool, Gerrard told the press after the final, "How can I leave after a night like this?" But negotiations soon stalled and on 5 July 2005, after Liverpool turned down another lucrative offer from Chelsea, Gerrard rejected a club-record £100,000-a-week offer. Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry conceded the club had lost Gerrard, saying, "Now we have to move on. We have done our best, but Steven Gerrard has made it clear Steven Gerrard wants to go and I think it looks pretty final." The next day, Gerrard signed a new four-year deal as Parry blamed the earlier breakdown of talks on miscommunication between the two sides.

Gerrard scored twenty-three goals in 53 appearances in 2005–06, and in April became the first Liverpool player since John Barnes (footballer) in 1988 to be voted the PFA Players' Player of the Year. Steven Gerrard scored twice in the 2006 FA Cup final against West Ham United F.C., including an equalizer that sent the match into extra time, and Liverpool won their second consecutive major trophy on penalties. The goals made Steven Gerrard the only player to have scored in the FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup and Champions League finals. Gerrard netted a penalty as Liverpool eliminated league rival Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League 2006-07 semi-finals to return to their second final in three seasons, which they lost 2–1 to Milan.

Gerrard suffered a hairline toe fracture in an August 2007 Champions League qualifier against Toulouse F.C, but returned four days later to play the entirety of a 1–1 league draw against Chelsea. On 28 October 2007, Gerrard played Steven Gerrard 400th game for Liverpool in a league match against Arsenal F.C., in which Steven Gerrard scored. Steven Gerrard scored in all but one of Liverpool's domestic and European matches during the month of November, and after scoring the only goal in a Champions League away tie against Olympique de Marseille on 11 December, Steven Gerrard became the first Liverpool player since John Aldridge in 1989 to score in seven consecutive games in all competitions.

Steven Gerrard made Steven Gerrard 300th Premier League appearance on 13 April 2008 in a match against Blackburn Rovers, scoring the opening goal, and finished the season with twenty-one goals in all competitions, surpassing Steven Gerrard total from the 2006–07 season. Gerrard was selected for the PFA Team of the Year and Steven Gerrard was also one of the nominees or the PFA Player of the Year, alongside teammate Fernando Torres.

Gerrard needed to undergo groin surgery at the beginning of the 2008–09 season, but the problem was not serious and Steven Gerrard quickly returned to training. Steven Gerrard scored what appeared to be Steven Gerrard hundredth career Liverpool goal against Stoke City F.C. on 20 September, but it was disallowed after Dirk Kuyt was ruled offside. Steven Gerrard achieved the milestone eleven days later in a 3–1 Champions League group stage win over PSV Eindhoven.

Steven Gerrard made Steven Gerrard 100th appearance in European club competition for Liverpool on 10 March 2009 against Real Madrid C.F. and scored twice in a 4–0 win. Four days after the impressive victory over Real, Gerrard would score at Old Trafford for the first time from the penalty spot, putting Liverpool ahead on their way to a 4–1 victory over Manchester United F.C.. Following these results, three-time FIFA World Player of the Year Zinedine Zidane hailed the Liverpool skipper, saying "Is Steven Gerrard the best in the world? Steven Gerrard might not get the attention of Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo but yes, I think Steven Gerrard might be." On 22 March 2009, Gerrard scored Steven Gerrard first ever hat-trick in the Premier League, against Aston Villa, in a 5–0 victory.
On 13 May 2009, Gerrard was named as the 2009 FWA Footballer of the Year, becoming the first Liverpool player to win the award in nineteen years. Gerrard had pipped Manchester United duo Ryan Giggs and Wayne Rooney in the poll voted for by journalists, beating Ryan Giggs by just 10 votes. Upon receiving the award, Steven Gerrard was quoted as saying "I'm delighted but I'm a little bit surprised," Steven Gerrard commented. "When you look at the quality of the players there are in this league, it's a great privilege to win this kind of award." Steven Gerrard ended the 2009-10 in English football with a total of 12 goals and 9 assists from 46 matches.

Following the 2009-10 in English football, Rafael Benitez departed Liverpool after six years and was succeeded as manager by Roy Hodgson, who quickly assured fans that Gerrard would not be sold.

Gerrard scored Steven Gerrard first goal of the 2010–11 in English football from the penalty spot in a Europa League qualifier against Macedonian side FK Rabotnicki on the 5th August 2010.

Steven Gerrard next two goals came on 19 September at Old Trafford in a 3–2 loss against Manchester United F.C.; Steven Gerrard scored from a penalty kick in the 64th minute and a free-kick 6 minutes later to level the game at 2–2.
Steven Gerrard followed this up with the equaliser in a 2–2 home draw with Sunderland Football Club. 11 days later Gerrard came off the bench to score a second-half hat-trick in a 3–1 win over Napoli FC in the 2010-11 UEFA Europa League.

International career

Gerrard made Steven Gerrard international debut against Ukraine national football team on 31 May 2000. That summer, Steven Gerrard was called up for 2000 European Football Championship, making only one appearance as a substitute in a 1–0 win over Germany national football team before England were eliminated in the group stage. Gerrard scored Steven Gerrard first international goal in the famous Germany 1–5 England (2001) in a 2002 FIFA World Cup qualifier in September 2001, and while England qualified, Gerrard was forced to pull out of the squad due to Steven Gerrard ongoing groin problems after pulling up in Liverpool's final match of the season against Ipswich Town F.C..

Steven Gerrard was a regular starter in UEFA Euro 2004, scoring once – against Switzerland national football team – before England were eliminated by Portugal national football team in the quarter-finals on penalties. Steven Gerrard participated in Steven Gerrard first 2006 FIFA World Cup in 2006 and two goals, both in the group stage, against Trinidad & Tobago national football team and Sweden national football team, although Steven Gerrard spot kick was one of three saved by goalkeeper Ricardo Pereira as England again bowed out to Portugal in the quarter-finals on penalties. Steven Gerrard was England's top scorer in the tournament.

Gerrard was made vice-captain of the England team by coach Steve McClaren, and while Steven Gerrard filled in for John Terry as captain, England suffered back-to-back losses to Russia national football team and Croatia national football team 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 FIFA World Cup, scoring two goals in England's 5–1 win over Croatia national football team.

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 List of England national football team captains for the tournament.

In August 2010, Gerrard scored twice in a friendly match against Hungary national football team 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 UEFA Euro 2012 UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying campaign against Bulgaria National Football Team, which England won 4–0.

International goals

Personal life

Gerrard and Steven Gerrard wife, fashion journalist Alex Curran, married at the Cliveden in Buckinghamshire on 16 June 2007. Steven Gerrard has an older brother, Paul (not to be confused with former Everton goalkeeper Paul Gerrard), and Steven Gerrard cousin Anthony Gerrard plays for Cardiff City F.C. Steven and Alex have two daughters, Lilly-Ella (born 23 February 2004) and Lexie (9 May 2006).

In September 2006, Gerrard published Steven Gerrard autobiography, Gerrard: My Autobiography, ghost writer by journalist Henry Winter, which went on to win the Sports Book of the Year honour at the British Book Awards.

The autobiography ends with "I play for Jon-Paul." Gerrard's ten-year-old cousin, Jon-Paul Gilhooley, was killed in the 1989 Hillsborough Tragedy, when Gerrard was almost 9. "It was difficult knowing one of your cousins had lost Steven Gerrard life," Gerrard said. "Seeing Steven Gerrard family's reaction drove me on to become the player I am today."

On 1 October 2007, Gerrard was involved in a low-speed accident in Southport when the car Steven Gerrard was driving hit a ten-year-old bicyclist, who had shot into the street and inadvertently cut off Gerrard's path. Steven Gerrard later visited the boy in the hospital and presented Steven Gerrard with a pair of boots signed by the boy's favourite player, Wayne Rooney, after which Steven Gerrard stayed to sign autographs for other young patients.

Councillors of Metropolitan Borough of Knowsley voted to make Gerrard a Freeman of the Borough on 13 December 2007, and two weeks later, Steven Gerrard was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire by Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom in The Queen's Orders, decorations, and medals of the United Kingdom, for services to sport. Steven Gerrard received an honorary fellowship from Liverpool John Moores University on 26 July 2008 as recognition for Steven Gerrard contribution to sport.

On 29 December 2008, Gerrard was taken into custody outside the Lounge Inn in Southport on suspicion of a Grievous bodily harm Section 20 (as amended). Steven Gerrard and two others were later charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and affray, relating to an incident which left the bar's disc jockey with a broken tooth and cuts to Steven Gerrard forehead. The three men were given Bail Forms and were required to appear at North Sefton Magistrates' Court on 23 January 2009, The case was adjourned until 20 March when the assault charge was dropped but Gerrard was required to attend Crown Court to face trial for affray. On 3 April, Gerrard pleaded not guilty.

The case went to trial in Liverpool Crown Court. Gerrard's co-defendants pleaded guilty before the trial but Gerrard maintained Steven Gerrard innocence. Gerrard admitted hitting Marcus McGee but claimed it was in self defence and on July 24, Gerrard was found not guilty by the jury. Following the verdict, Gerrard said Steven Gerrard was looking forward to getting back to playing football and putting the experience behind him.

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