Former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier describes the first time he saw Steven Gerrard play

Steven Gerrard In 2014

The former Liverpool boss is paying tribute to the Liverpool captain this afternoon.

This morning Steven Gerrard confirmed that at the end of the season he would be leaving Liverpool to try his hand at football abroad, after a 25-year association at the club.

Gerrard is a club legend and is expected to head to the USA, with LA Galaxy and New York Red Bulls believed to be keen on his signature.

It has been a long day for Liverpool fans, many still reeling with the decision and wondering how Liverpool will ever replace their club legend.

Gerrard made his debut for Liverpool back in 1998, with Frenchman Gerard Houllier handing him his debut in November.

Now the former Liverpool manager has been discussing the Liverpool legend on the day he announced he would be leaving the club - including the first time he saw him play.

Houllier stated:

"I remember the first time I saw Stevie. I was looking for somebody to play on the right wing and Steve Heighway said he thought he had an answer in the Under-19s. There was a game organised between them and Blackburn’s Under-19s so I went.

"After five minutes I realised the guy he was talking about would not fit into the wide position that I wanted, but in the middle of the park there was a player running from box to box, shouting at his team-mates and tackling, controlling the tempo.

"At half-time I asked who he was and they told me it was a boy from the academy, that he was only 17 and played with the Under-19s to help them out, that he did not train a lot because he was often injured. In the second half he was as good as in the first, so I remember at the end of the match I told him that tomorrow he would be training with the pros. That’s how he came to Melwood for the first time."

And Liverpool fans have been thankful ever since.

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