Ferdinand slams Liverpool for lack of 'loyalty' towards Gerrard

Rio Ferdinand slams Liverpool for not showing ‘local lad’ Steven Gerrard ‘loyalty’ at the end of his career after the Reds legend rejected ‘OBSCENE’ offer from Chelsea in favour of staying at Anfield a decade earlier

  • Steven Gerrard made 710 appearances for Liverpool across a 17-year period
  • He nearly joined Chelsea in 2005 but stayed at Anfield, becoming a club legend
  • Rio Ferdinand has blasted the Reds for not repaying that loyalty a decade later
  • Gerrard joined LA Galaxy in 2015 after a new Liverpool deal was not forthcoming
  • He said he would have stayed but the Reds planned to reduce his game time

Rio Ferdinand has blasted Liverpool for a lack of loyalty towards Steven Gerrard at the end of his playing career. 

Gerrard, a boyhood Reds fan, joined the club at the age of nine and made 710 appearances over a 17-year professional career at Anfield – only Ian Callaghan and Jamie Carragher have made more. 

Things could have been very different though. The midfielder came close to joining Chelsea in the summer of 2005, having told Liverpool he wanted to leave following intense interest from the Blues. 

Rio Ferdinand says Liverpool did not show loyalty to Steven Gerrard at the end of his career

But of course that move never happened as Gerrard ended up signing a new contract on Merseyside and became a club legend. 

Speaking on his FIVE podcast, Ferdinand criticised Liverpool for not repaying that loyalty a decade down the line. 

‘Let’s look at the Steven Gerrard case, he’s been loyal to them,’ the former defender said. ‘He had obscene offers probably from Chelsea, they courted him, they tried every which way they could through players, and what not trying to get him and unsettle him. 

‘He became unsettled, flirted with the idea a little bit, but actually, loyalty probably made him stay at Liverpool. Whatever happened, he was courted by Chelsea. He decides to stay, and then he gets towards the end of his career and the club don’t want to give him a new deal.’

Gerrard nearly joined Chelsea in 2005, having just won the Champions League with the Reds

But the English midfielder stayed at Anfield for a further decade and became a club legend

Gerrard eventually left Liverpool to join MLS side LA Galaxy in 2015, after a new contract at Liverpool was not forthcoming.

The midfielder was 34 at the time and had retired from international duty with England to concentrate on his club career. But the Reds were looking to the future under Brendan Rodgers and planned to reduce Gerrard’s game time, which convinced him to move away. 

He would spend just one season in the United States before retiring and starting his coaching career in Liverpool’s academy. 

But Ferdinand believes that the Reds should have kept Gerrard around and helped him to start his transition to coaching while he was still a player.  

Ferdinand thinks that Liverpool should not have let Gerrard join LA Galaxy so easily in 2015

‘Bearing in mind [he’s] arguably the club’s best-ever player, been apart of iconic moments at the football club and would have had so much to offer young players staying there from a culture, a mentality and somebody they can look at and identify as a local lad, but they let him go to LA Galaxy,’ Ferdinand continued.

‘There was the ability for him to stay there as a player-coach and groom him into being a coach in the system that they’ve got or a manager, but they chose to do something totally different and allowed him to go to LA Galaxy. 

‘So when you talk about loyalty maybe if the club were being shown an element of loyalty there they might have gone, you know what, because of that loyalty he’s showing us, we’re going to give him a bit back at the end of his career.’

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