As the Liverpool skipper celebrates another milestone, Ian Doyle picks eight of his greatest games
STEVEN GERRARD celebrated yet another landmark in his incredible Liverpool career by making his 600th appearance for the club against Newcastle United last weekend.
He joins a select club of only nine other players to have reached such a figure in Anfield history.
“When I was a young boy, I never dreamed I was going to make that many,” says Gerrard. “It was all about pulling that red shirt on and making one appearance for the club and then the dream was made.
“So to clock up 600 games is a magnificent achievement for me and my family and everyone is really proud.”
And here, in chronological order and in salute to his squad number, we select what we regard as the Liverpool captain’s eight most memorable appearances for the club.
Warning: may contain Istanbul (but doesn’t contain Olympiakos)...
March 31 2001, Premier League, Liverpool 3 Manchester United 1
Gerrard was already forging a reputation in Liverpool’s treble-winning season when he further grew in prominence with this performance against a side who were won their way to completing a hat-trick of championships. Playing on the right of midfield, the then 20-year-old was the driving influence behind a resounding win for Gerard Houllier’s side, his 16th-minute blast a contender for goal of the season.
May 25 2005, Champions League final, AC Milan 3-3 Liverpool (2-3 on pens)
YOU all know the tale. But without Gerrard straining every neck sinew to get on the end of John Arne Riise’s cross in 54th minute, there would probably have been no comeback, no fifth European Cup and no small industry in resultant documentaries, plays, poems, flags, t-shirts, DVDs and commemorative dinner plates. Gerrard also won the penalty from which Xabi Alonso eventually equalised, filled in at right-back during extra time and was due to take the last spot-kick in the shoot-out before being spared the torment and going straight to picking up the trophy instead.
May 13 2006, FA Cup final, Liverpool 3-3 West Ham (3-1 on pens)
A PERFORMANCE so incredible – and probably the one for which he will be most remembered – that this is now known as the Gerrard final. With Liverpool doing their usual mountain out of a molehill trick and 2-0 down, Gerrard’s raking pass set up Djibril Cisse to volley one back before the skipper cracked home Peter Crouch’s header down to equalise. Paul Konchesky’s freak strike appeared to have won it for West Ham before, in injury time, a tiring Gerrard received the ball 35 yards from goal and smashed a shot beyond Shaka Hislop into the bottom corner. To ice the cake, Gerrard then scored in the ensuing shoot-out and realised a boyhood ambition by lifting the FA Cup.