Oct 22 2007
by Tony Barrett, Liverpool Echo
STEVEN GERRARD today told how the joy of Liverpool’s last gasp win over Everton helped ease the pain of being taken off in Saturday’s derby.
The Liverpool skipper was visibly stunned at being substituted – a decision which Rafa Benitez says was made for the good of the team on the day.
Despite being “hurt and disappointed” at being withdrawn, Gerrard insists the important thing was that Liverpool went on to win the game and avenge last season’s 3-0 reverse at the hands of their local rivals.
He said: “I’m a local lad so the derby is really important to me and I would have liked nothing better than to play the full game and to be on the pitch when we got the winner.
“But as it turned out I was taken off and Lucas Leiva who replaced me played a crucial role in us getting the winning goal.
“I was hurt and disappointed at being taken off because, like I said, I’m a local lad and the derby means everything to me.
“I’ll be speaking to the manager about it just to find out why I was substituted, but I won’t be banging on his door or anything like that.
“We’ll just have a chat and whatever is said will remain between us. But I’ve been in the game long enough to know that no-one is going to play every minute of every game and there will be times when I’m taken off like everyone else.
“The most important thing is that we won the game.
“When we lost there last season it left a bad feeling that didn’t go away for quite some time, so it is good to get that out of our systems.”
Gerrard also thanked the Liverpool fans for the support they gave him at Goodison Park as he bids to rediscover his best form.
He said: “The way the fans got behind me was fantastic and I loved it.
“I know I haven’t been at my best lately but I’m doing everything I can to get back there and having that kind of backing really does make a difference.
“I’m working back towards my best and knowing the fans are behind me will definitely help me get there much quicker.”
utusanLFC : when the whistle was blown and the camera was still in the middle of the pitch, suddenly from the left corner of your tv, you could see one player raised his hands and runs towards the LFC supporters. It does bring smiles in us... as if it was a final of a cup game! I guess thats how it is for Carra and Gerrard. They put so much heart in it. No wonder both were very deep in the controversy. Gerrard was mentioned by Rafa as playing with his heart, instead of head... Carra was the one who downed the Everton player at the dying minute... hmmm...