The former Liverpool captain will retire without a Premier League winner’s medal and that famous slip will forever play in the back of his mind.
It’s been a roller-coaster of a ride for Steven Gerrard, but to leave the Premier League after 17 years (1989-2015, not including youth career) without a title to his name will always hurt.
Regardless of the lack of domestic titles, Gerrard will forever go down as a Liverpool legend and possibly the greatest captain the club has had. He didn’t always have great players surrounding him like Kenny Dalglish did in the 80’s but he stuck through the hard times and did his utmost.
Speaking to Rio Ferdinand in an interview for BT Sport which airs Wednesday night at 10pm and is transcribed in the Mirror, Gerrard opens up about his slip at Stamford Bridge two seasons ago that destroyed any chance he had of lifting the Premier League trophy.
The former England captain admitted that the unforgettable incident that saw Chelsea clinch three points, in the title race that Manchester City eventually won, will always haunt him.
Gerrard believes Liverpool got it tactically wrong and paid the price for their naivety against Chelsea; a major reason he never won the prize he wanted more than any other.
The Merseyside team were within touching distance of winning the title in 2014 but disastrous results against Chelsea and Crystal Palace as the season came to an end gave City too many chances not to put it away.
Liverpool finished second with Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea sitting a place behind.
“That game against Chelsea, with the slip, our tactical approach was probably inexperienced for the whole game – going out to try and blow Chelsea away,” Gerrard said on BT Sport, as reported by the Mirror.
“A lot of teams we played prior to that game we were blowing them away comfortably. So the atmosphere was obviously great at that time.
“Going into the Chelsea game, I think because we were in a good run and good form and no fault to Brendan at all, but we sort of went in with the same tactics, you know?
“We heard Chelsea possibly making a few changes and we actually had the confidence, ‘We can blow them away’, but I think sort of underestimated the power of Mourinho.
“He spoilt the game and he even said after – he was quoted – ‘We came to spoil the party.’ The slip happened at a bad time, it was cruel for me personally.
“There’s not a day that doesn’t go by that I don’t think about, ‘What if that didn’t happen?’
“Would things have been different? Would it have turned out different? Maybe it might have, I don’t know.
“But even still, it [the slip] happened after half an hour and we still had the time to get the draw we needed.
“The inexperience showed from myself having not been in many title races and the inexperience of the team, our reaction was to go chase it and hunt it down and try and make up for that cruel moment and we lost our way.
“We went gung-ho instead of being more controlled and maybe just being a little bit more calculated in the way we went about it for the equaliser.”
Then, last season, a year later, Gerrard was continuously reminded of his slip by rivals in the stands whenever the club travelled. Manchester United fans, in particular, took great pleasure in airing an array of anti-Gerrard songs.
“You’ve got to be thick-skinned and take a bit of criticism along the way,” he continued.
“I’m not scared of any criticism or any cruelty. I understand the moment and impact it had. It kills me, don’t get me wrong. Inside it kills me and it will do for a long time.
“I think to myself if I’d have got that league it would have been the icing on the cake. But what helps me with it is that I’ve got the cake.
“I’ve got memories – good memories that will live with me for ever, but that is one moment that will always hurt me until the day I go and it’s because if I’d have got that moment, I’d have achieved every dream with Liverpool.
“As a man, it hurts.”
Steven Gerrard will now move his career and family to Los Angeles where he will now become an LA Galaxy player.
In other news, Our View: Liverpool might be about to suffer a double blow