#LA Galaxy have today confirmed that veteran midfielder Steven #Gerrard has left the club following their Western Conference semi-final defeat to Colorado Rapids. The game ended 1-0 to Colorado with the tie ending 1-1 on aggregate and needed ex-Everton goalkeeper Tim Howard to produce two saves in the resulting penalty shootout, to separate the side in which #Gerrard would score the only penalty for his side. Now the 36 year-old finds himself without a club for the first time in his illustrious career, and the question on everyone's minds at the moment is what is next for Steven Gerrard.
Whilst Gerrard is concerned, a return to #Liverpool is always going to be touted in the press. It has the potential for the fairy tale ending that Gerrard was denied as #Liverpool's title challenge collapsed towards the climax of the 2013/14 Premier League season. Liverpool sit top of the #EPL table 11 games in and has got fans wondering whether a January return would catalyse a first title in the Premier League era and end their 26 year wait. It is always a possibility, his vast experience would benefit the current crop of players and is a known leader. Something that Liverpool could profit from as there are concerns about whether Henderson deserves the arm band and a lack of leaders in an otherwise impressive side. However, this is more of a pipe dream for Liverpool fans, with many believing that the chance to win Gerrard his first Premier League medal dead and buried. With the scar of Gerrard's infamous slip which is the scapegoat for the failed title challenge still fresh and still very much a popular meme on social media.
It was lack of game time under Rodgers which convinced Gerrard to seek pastures new and move to LA Galaxy. Now under current #LFC boss Klopp, the situation wouldn't be any different, if anything Gerrard would be further down the pecking order. His age inhibiting him from being able to implement Klopp's gegenpressing style of play, players who have thrived under the system such as Can, Lallana and new signing Wijnaldum would surely prove better options than the ageing Gerrard. I would categorically rule out any chance of Gerrard returning to Liverpool for a second stint at the club. He would offer experience and wisdom for a youthful Liverpool side but the idea of a return is only for the optimists and if it came to fruition; would be a sentimental move only.
Where to next?
A move to another club is not off the cards for Gerrard as ex-Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers could offer him a chance to continue playing at Scottish champions #Celtic. Both Rodgers and Gerrard have always spoken of admiration for each other, "I wish that I'd met Brendan when I was 24 because I think I'd be sitting here talking about a lot titles that we'd won together". It would make sense for both club and player with Celtic gaining a player experienced in European football and Gerrard would without a doubt be a regular, partnering Scott Brown in the centre of midfield. But this is a move that only seems to be media speculation.
There is also the route of hanging up the boots for Gerrard and taking on a coaching role at Liverpool. Talks have already taken place about a potential return to Anfield as a coach. Similar to a move to Celtic, it is another win-win situation. With Gerrard using the role as a learning opportunity whilst getting his coaching badges to eventually aid a managerial career and for Liverpool having a 17 year servant of the club, one of the clubs most devoted players and a man once considered the best midfielder in world football helping with the development of the academy players.
As there is no doubt that Gerrard would be an inspiration for the Liverpool Academy. As Gerrard considers potential retirement there are several potential options on the table, whether he decides to continue his playing career or hang up his boots and pursue a coaching role, Gerrard will forever be one of the best midfielders to ever grace the game.