Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has said that he did not expect Steven Gerrard to carry the disappointment of not winning the title into the World Cup with England and that his slip against Chelsea was not the season defining moment for the Reds.
An outstanding season which began with Liverpool competing for the fourth spot ended with a lot of disappointment as the Reds couldn’t win the Premier League after spending virtually the whole of 2014 undefeated in the league.
Steven Gerrard has all the accolades in his trophy cabinet except for a league title and the Liverpool and England captain came agonizingly close to winning it, but it was his rather hyped slip that gifted Demba Ba a goal in Chelsea’s crucial win over Liverpool at Anfield. The Reds had their destiny in their own hands till then, but the loss handed over the initiative to Manchester City, who went on to win the league.
Gerrard’s slip has been mocked by all rival fans and became a rather famous chant in the remaining matches. But the Liverpool boss insisted that the 33 year old had the mental strength to recover from the disappointment of not winning the league and would lead England well in the World Cup. He also said that Gerrard’s slip or Kolo Toure’s misplaced pass did not cost Liverpool the title. Instead it was the games where they conceded a lot of goals, which were the games to put the blame on (if Liverpool’s season campaign were to be scrutinized)
“I’ve no concerns whatsoever about Steven. I think Steven will go away and when he reflects on what has been personally a brilliant season of football, he has been very unfairly pointed out in terms of his slip”, Rodgers said
“It could have happened in the third game it could have happened in the fourth game but it certainly wasn’t anywhere near the defining moment of our season. That wasn’t what cost us the league. It was more games when we won the games.
“When we won 5-3 at Stoke, when we won 6-3 at Cardiff, when we won 4-3 at home and conceded three. It was those games, not Steven’s slip or Kolo’s misplaced pass.He is a very conscientious boy and he loves Liverpool. He is very hard on himself and he’s his own worst critic but he comes away recognising that he has been involved in a real title run in and next season he will be better for it.
“He will take that confidence into a World Cup. I always say to players ‘when you go to England don’t think of Liverpool – think about your country and the team you are playing for.’
“One of his qualities is that he can do that. He is a model professional at that, he is very proud to play for England and captain his country and I am sure he will go and do the country proud again.”