By Ankit Basu
Photo Credit: Sky Sports
Aston Villa set to make approach for Rangers manager.
Aston Villa look set to approach Rangers within the next 48 hours for permission to talk to Steven Gerrard, after the previous Liverpool man was recognized as their No 1 option to succeed Dean Smith as manager.
Gerrard, who’s under contract till 2024 at Ibrox, is reportedly desirous about a possible return to England. A compensation bundle of round £2m is unlikely to be a stumbling block for Villa’s homeowners, Nassef Sawiris and Wes Edens.
The 41-year-old has long been talked of as Jürgen Klopp’s successor at Anfield and, considerably coincidentally, their present contracts finish in the identical 12 months. However, Villa’s ambitions might be an attraction for Gerrard as the Midlands membership look to construct on final season’s Eleventh-placed end.
A single league title in Scotland, as well as decent European success, is enough to make Gerrard the favourite for the Aston Villa job. If he wasn’t The Steven Gerrard, that would probably be unthinkable due to the lack of movement in the world-famous Ibrox trophy cabinet. He really should return to England while his stock is this high.
Who is Steven Gerrard: Profile & History
Gerrard was discovered by his local upper-division football club, Liverpool FC, at age nine. He played for Liverpool’s youth squad and signed a professional contract with them at age 17. His first-team debut came in 1998, and he became a regular contributor the following year. Gerrard had established himself as a star midfielder by the 2000–01 season, when Liverpool won the League, Football Association (FA), and Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) cups and Gerrard earned England’s Young Player of the Year honours.
In October 2003, manager Gerard Houllier handed the captain’s armband to Gerrard. He replaced centre-back Sami Hyypia as skipper and Gerrard then signed a new four-year contract with the Reds.
In 2005/06, Gerrard won the PFA Player of the Year award and lifted the FA Cup. He scored 23 goals in 53 appearances in all competitions.
Gerrard’s sensational equaliser against West Ham United in the FA Cup final ultimately won the trophy for his side. He became the only player to have scored in the FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup and Champions League finals.
In the 2007/08 campaign, Gerrard struck up a deadly partnership with new Liverpool striker Fernando Torres, but Liverpool finished fourth in the Premier League and were eliminated by Chelsea in the Champions League semifinals.
The 2014/15 season was Gerrard’s last in Liverpool colours. The Reds finished sixth in the Premier League as Chelsea stormed to the title, but Gerrard received a standing ovation at Stamford Bridge when he was substituted off, despite the fierce rivalry between Liverpool and Chelsea and his previous snub of the Blues’ transfer advances.
After his spell at Liverpool came to an end, Gerrard joined LA Galaxy in MLS.
At Galaxy, he played alongside former England teammate Ashley Cole and former Liverpool teammate Robbie Keane. Despite his short time in the league, with just 13 league appearances, Gerrard’s impact was such that he was named on the roster for the 2015 MLS All-Star Game.
Gerrard scored 21 goals in 114 England caps and appeared in the 2006, 2010 and 2014 World Cups, captaining England in 2010 and 2014.
He scored his first England goal in a 5-1 victory over Germany in 2002 World Cup qualifying, but withdrew from the tournament due to injury.
Steven Gerrard All Time Stats
- Matches Played: 772
- Goals: 187
- Total Started: 709
- Games Selected: 714
- Sub: 77
- Minutes Played: 53826
- Came On: 63
- Assists: 156
- Yellow Card: 94
- Red Card: 8
- FA Cup: 2 (2001, 2006)
- League Cup: 3 (2001, 2003, 2012)
- UEFA Champions League: 1 (2005)
- UEFA Cup: 1 (2001)
- FA Community Shield: 2 (2001, 2006)
- UEFA Super Cup: 2 (2001, 2005)
- FWA Footballer of the Year: 1 (2009)
- PFA Players’ Player of the Year: 1 (2006)
- PFA Young Player of the Year: 1 (2001)
- PFA Fans’ Player of the Year: 2 (2001, 2009)
- PFA Team of the Year: 8 (2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2014)
- FA Premier League Player of the Month: 6 (March 2001, March 2003, December 2004, April 2006, March 2009, March 2014)
- Liverpool top goalscorer: 4 (2004–05, 2005–06, 2008–09, 2014-15)
- UEFA Club Footballer of the Year: 1 (2005)
- UEFA Champions League Final Man of the Match: 1 (2005)
- UEFA Team of the Year: 3 (2005, 2006, 2007)
- FIFA/FIFPro World XI: 3 (2007, 2008, 2009)
- Standard Chartered Player of the Month: 3 (March 2012, January 2013, March 2014)
- FA Cup Final Man of the Match: 1 (2006)
- BBC Goal of the Season: 1 (2006)
- England Player of the Year: 2 (2007, 2012)
Gerrard’s Management Career
The former midfielder took charge of Liverpool’s Under-19 side as they took part in the UEFA Youth League – a Europe-wide competition for elite academies.
After spending time gaining experience and managing in Liverpool’s youth ranks, Gerrard was confirmed as the new Rangers manager ahead of the 2018/19 season, replacing Graeme Murty in the dugout.
Rangers have progressed under the former England international, steadily reeling in a dominant Celtic team in his first couple of seasons and the Gers’ start to the 2020/21 campaign was one of the best in the club’s long history.
Steven Gerrard Managerial record at Rangers
- Games: 193
- Wins: 125
- Draws: 42
- Losses: 26
- Win %: 64.77
This season, Rangers’ performances have significantly dipped in comparison to last term. They went the whole league season unbeaten on course to their 55th league title, and lost on matchday two in 2021/22. The Europa League knockout stages may elude them after greater success in a tougher group last term.
Aston Villa opportunity is a move Gerrard needs to make for the sake of his managerial career. It is forward motion and Gerrard of all people should understand the need for forward motion.
So, what do you think, should he leave for Aston Villa?