At the age of 33 it won’t be too long before Steven Gerrard retires from international football. The World Cup in Brazil or Euro 2016 in France could be his last tournament for the Three Lions. England will miss his presence in the middle of the midfield.
Many have said Gerrard should have had the captain’s armband sooner, a position he has held at Liverpool ever since 2003, replacing Sami Hyypia in the role.
He has grown into that responsibility to be the man that everyone has looked to for a big performance in important games at Anfield. It has grown into a similar situation with England, where Gerrard has shown his class in recent performances and has saved England from some real potentially embarrassing results.
It has come to the point where if Gerrard doesn’t play well, which is a rarity, his team doesn’t play well.
Liverpool have brought in some match winners to take the pressure off Gerrard, such as Daniel Sturridge and Philippe Coutinho. England must rely on the younger generation to take Gerrard’s place and put in the performances he has in the international arena.
His presence, calming influence and ability are very hard to match, and there is an argument that Gerrard is one of, if not the best England midfielder ever, really maturing into the role in the past five years.
Gerrard has 107 senior caps to his name - without him in the team, England look shaky.
Roy Hodgson will have real problems when Gerrard does retire, first of which will be picking his captain.
It will be most likely be Wayne Rooney. The hardest of jobs will be to find someone of Gerrard’s stature to fill the role, but in Jack Wilshere there is potential to be a world-class midfielder.
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