Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard: 10 times football's greats spoke about his genius

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Steven Gerrard has made an extraordinary impact at Rangers. 

The 40-year-old has taken his side to the top of the Scottish Premiership, 11 points clear of Celtic at the time of writing.

Gerrard only took the job in 2018 and it was always going to take a phenomenal effort to overhaul the club's rivals and prevent them making it 10 in a row. 

Yet it's remarkable to think it's only four years since the legendary midfielder hung up his boots.

In fact, four years ago on this very day the Liverpool icon, who was by then playing for LA Galaxy, confirmed he would be calling time on his illustrious career. 

Gerrard won nine honours on Merseyside and even made it onto the Ballon d'Or podium, finishing third in 2005 having led the Reds to Champions League glory. 

Don't be fooled, kids. The debate may rage on about how he compared to Frank Lampard and Paul Scholes, but Gerrard was a beautifully unique player in his own right. 

Ask any Liverpool fan and they'll tell you as much, but he also earned praise from some of the most high-profile names in the game, which is testament to his standing as one of the greats of his generation. 

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We've trawled through old press conferences and, with a little help from Planet Football along the way, here are the best 10 attempts to encapsulate the genius of Stevie G. 

Jose Mourinho

"It's my time to honour the champion. It's my time to honour Steven Gerrard. Because of opponents like him that I am the manager I am, because I learn with my players and I learn with my best opponents with the problems they give me and the way they make me think and the way they make me analyse them and study the best way to play against them."

Sir Alex Ferguson 

“He has become the most influential player in England, bar none. More than Vieira,” Ferguson said, via the Daily Mail. 

“Not that Vieira lacks anything, but I think he does more for his team than Vieira does and has way more to his game. I’ve watched him quite a lot. Anyone would love to have him in their team.”

Michael Owen 

“I have played alongside some of the greatest footballers of my generation, but there is only one ex-team-mate I would rate higher than Steven Gerrard. The biggest compliment I can give him is he is second only to Zinedine Zidane in terms of his world-class status."

Jurgen Klopp

"He's a really good person...If he wants to train [with us] he can, he can use Melwood for about 500 years!" 

Thierry Henry 

“It was a disgrace he didn’t win European Footballer of the Year after Istanbul in 2005 and, for me, he will be regarded as one of the greatest midfielders of all time.”

Mauricio Pochettino 

"I think he was one of the best players that was born in England and I always admired him. He was a fantastic player and we will miss a player like him on the pitch. He was young, box-to-box, and then in his last period with Liverpool, dropped a little bit his position. His quality, like Pirlo, like Lampard, this type of player. Fantastic." 

Rafael Benitez

"I was really lucky because we got the best from Stevie, the time we were there he scored 104 goals. He was an amazing player. He was the kind of player that you will not find too many now. He was so professional, he was a leader, he was an example on the pitch and out of the pitch.

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"He was always focused and working so hard for the team...We're talking about one of the big names in football, one of the best players that I have ever had. He could score goals, he could tackle, he could be an inspiration."

Paolo Maldini 

“What I have always liked of Steven is that on the pitch he was very quiet, but was capable of inspiring all his team-mates with great strength, not so much with words. The real example – and that is what I’ve learned from players like Steven and Franco Baresi – is to do rather than talk.

Jamie Redknapp 

“He’s got a little bit of everything. He can score goals like Lampard, tackle like Keane… My dad summed it up perfectly when he first saw him play. He said, ‘He’s like Roy of the Rovers, that kid.’ That’s what Stevie is and that’s why they love him at Liverpool.”

Francesco Totti 

“Steven Gerrard would be the captain of my World XI dream team. Gerrard is a complete player because he can play in every position and can do everything with a football at any time in a game."

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