As they were in September, Liverpool have spent the October international break top of the table on points, even if this time around Arsenal are ahead on goal differential. The altitude, unfamiliar to both fans and players in recent seasons, had Steven Gerrard in a reflective mood.
"I am the captain of my boyhood team," said Gerrard. "I have a special relationship with staff and supporters. There is a bond there. I've never made decisions financially. I make them with my heart—and that's why I haven't moved on."
Most fans were quick to forgive charge his flirtations with Chelsea in the summer of 2004 after new manager Rafa Benitez was able to convince him he could win trophies staying at his boyhood club.
His summer of uncertainty was followed by Champions League victory, but Premier League honours have remained elusive despite the club breaking the 80 point barrier twice since. And while he'd still like to win it, Gerrard admits it's not likely.
"I'd never say never about our chances of winning the Premier League title," he admitted, reflecting on Liverpool's strong start to the season and his efforts to not allow himself to be carried away. "But if I'm being honest, that's not the aim. The aim is for a top-four place.
"My only regrets are the times I've had lows at Liverpool. But I find I have learned more from the lows. The feelings the fans go through at the end of a match—I feel them too. There's a lot at stake every time I pull on a shirt for Liverpool."
Steven Gerrard will captain England on Tuesday as they host Poland in the final group qualifying match for Brazil 2014. Where, if everybody's being honest, the aim will be having a decent group stage and going out in the quarters.
However, with Ukraine, Group H's second place side, facing off against pointless San Marino, England will almost certainly need a win to avoid dropping to second themselves and heading to the playoff stage for the eight best runner-ups.
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