Champions League

Gerrard issues rallying cry

2014-09-15 11:15
Steven Gerrard (AFP)

Cape Town - Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has called on the club's fans to get behind the team in a manner reminiscent of the 2005 Champions League final.

"They have got to enjoy it. It's what football is all about and where every player wants to be." said the Liverpool skipper on the club's website.

Gerrard is just one of two players in the current Liverpool squad who played in the Anfield side's last Champions League game in December 2009.

On that occasion, Fiorentina pulled off a 2-1 home win at Anfield which confirmed Gerrard and Co's exit from the group stages.

"There's no doubt about it, we wouldn't have got over the line in 2005 and lifted the trophy without the backing we got from the supporters," Gerrard told the Liverpool Echo.

"My message to the supporters is that we need that kind of support going into the Champions League this year.

"All the big trophies I've ever experienced winning, it's always been because the crowd have got behind us, both at Anfield and away from home.

"The support we got at half-time in Istanbul is the reason why Liverpool fans are the best in the world.

"At 3-0 down, the game was almost over but they found their voices. They sang You'll Never Walk Alone and the hairs on the back of my neck stood up.

"It was incredible. I'm proud to have them as my supporters.

"For our new signings, I'm sure they will know before kick-off on Tuesday that a European night at Anfield is a bit different because the support will be phenomenal.

"There has almost been a jealousy and an envy that we weren't involved," said Gerrard on watching other sides participate in the most prestigious club competition in the world.

"Watching the likes of Chelsea and Man United in it when we were finishing outside the top four was tough. I've been craving it.

"I'm just glad it's finally here. It's reward for all the hard work last season.

"Everyone is looking forward to hearing that music. We need to enjoy it but we're not in it to make the numbers up. We want to do as well as we can."

"The way the game went and the journey we went on during that season it's no surprise to me that people are still making films about it nine and a half years later," said Gerrard.

"It's memories that will go to the grave with me. Not just the final but the journey we went on.

"Olympiacos when we looked dead and buried, Juventus and then Chelsea who were big favourites over two legs but we put our bodies on the line.

"In the first half of the final it looked like the game was over. At half-time I was thinking this could be five, six or seven. To go out there and turn it around was a dream come true.

"The feeling when Jerzy [Dudek] saved the last penalty is difficult to put into words. I get goosebumps just thinking about it.

"When you become a Liverpool player, there's almost a responsibility and a big pressure to deliver trophies, especially the European Cup.

"It was almost a relief as well as a celebration when we got over the line."


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