"It's very important," said Steven Gerrard when asked if Liverpool need to hold on to Daniel Agger in the face of interest from Manchester City and elsewhere. "He's a top player who's been here for seven years now and he's one of the fan favourites. He shows passion and commitment every time he plays, but it might be one of those situations where it's not in Daniel's hands and it's up to the owners at the end of the day."
On the back of comments made by Brendan Rodgers on Wednesday, when the manager admitted that any player has a price rather than refusing to contemplate selling Agger, it was a worrying moment for many Liverpool fans following an otherwise enjoyable victory over FC Gomel in the Europa League. What made Gerrard's comments even more concerning for many was the defeated tone he appeared to take when talking of the decision to sell the player or not having nothing to do with the player's wishes in the matter.
After a summer that has already seen a number of veterans leave in the name of trimming the wage bill, there appeared in Gerrard's words and tone the suggestion that Agger might find himself the latest whose contributions on the pitch—or in his case perhaps a spotty injury record—weren't at the same level as his wages or wage demands. On the other hand, though, the club's captain publicly stating that if Agger were to leave it would be the choice of the owners and not the player might, if one squints just right, seem an attempt to push those owners towards the result the captain desires—in this case, holding on to the club's star centre back.
Still, it wasn't all bad news for fans on the Agger front, as Gerrard's apparent resignation stood in stark contrast to manager Brendan Rodgers' words on the subject when he was asked for an update on Agger minutes later during his post-match press conference:
"There's nothing new to add. He's very important for me. I like to have a playmaker at the back, and with Daniel, this is his game—building from behind, stepping out with the ball and making passes. For me there's no update because we don't want to sell him. He's a player who is very important for me and it will remain that way."
So Agger doesn't want to leave, the manager doesn't want him to leave, and the club's captain doesn't want him to leave. Which all would seem to make things fairly straightforward except that for many it will be hard to entirely overlook Gerrard's decision to place the outcome in this case, whatever it may end up being, at the feet of the owners. Or perhaps, of course, everybody is so desperate for news of the defender's future that far too much is being read into what in reality may be very little.