STEVEN GERRAD is determined to win the title before the end of his career – and will stay at Liverpool to achieve it.
As yet another season slips by without the championship crown going to Anfield, the captain is growing increasingly frustrated by the club’s inability to launch a geniune challenge.
In the Premier League era, Liverpool have only been in the top two once, when they finished seven points behind champions Arsenal as runners-up in 2002.
But Gerrard, who turns 28 this month, is confident that he will be around when the club finally closes the gap at the top and lands that first league win since 1990.
“I can’t see myself ever leaving Liverpool now, and what I would dearly love is to lead this club to the next level that I believe we are capable of reaching,” he said.
“I’ve won trophies here but there’s one I’m missing and I want that before I finish playing.
“I don’t want to look back and say I have never been in a title race. I can see that the team is getting stronger and stronger and I can see that we are going forward. I feel that we are getting closer and I really believe that.”
While Gerrard is wary that the team failed to live up to the expectation that was built up last summer with the club record signing of Fernando Torres, he thinks this summer’s signings will be even more vital to the club’s long-term direction.
“We always say this every year, but it will be an important summer because we need to keep the momentum,” said Gerrard.
“The manager’s signings will be important as they always are.
“I’ve been lucky as a footballer, and I’ve won more things that most players, but I’m greedy because I always want more – I want to win as many trophies as I can with Liverpool.
“That is why the summer is important.
“We are a young team with a lot of promise and if the manager can get the right support then we could take an important step forward.
“I don’t want to get into the politics of it all, but the manager knows what he needs, and we all know that we do have the chance this summer to go to that next level.
“We are disappointed we didn’t maintain a challenge in the league for longer than we did – the points gap between us and the top two isn’t particularly pleasant viewing for anyone here at Anfield. The boss is on record as saying he wants some players, and if we get some of the ones he wants then if they can have the same impact that guys like Fernando Torres, Martin Skrtel and Ryan Babel have had this year we’ll have taken a step forward.
“I think there is a hell of a lot more to come from us.”