For many, Steven Gerrard will always be remembered as the greatest Liverpool player of the Premier League era. Now, their former captain has returned to England to manage Aston Villa—and he’ll face the Reds with them next month.
Ahead of his first game at Villa Park, Gerrard was asked about that upcoming meeting and his relationship with Liverpool boss Jürgen Klopp, with the two working together briefly after Gerrard took on Liverpool U18 coaching duties in 2017.
“We live in a similar area [in Liverpool] so I bump into him when he walks his dogs,” Gerrard said when asked if he’s had any contact with the Liverpool manager over the years and if they’ve spoken since he took on the Aston Villa job.
“He’s a great man and coach, Liverpool are very lucky to have him at the helm so long may that continue. He sent me a message saying he’s looking forward to a big hug on the sideline in December so that’s something to look forward to.”
Before that match on the 11th of December, though, Villa have a difficult run—and a need to start earning results if they’re to claw their way out of the relegation battle they find themselves in a quarter of the way into the 2021-22 season.
Brighton travel to Villa Park this week before Gerrard takes his charges to London to face Crystal Palace. Then comes Manchester City, Leicester City, and Liverpool—all with Villa currently just two points clear of the relegation places.
For Liverpool, there are league games against Arsenal, Southampton, Everton, and Wolves plus European matches against Porto and AC Milan—though the Reds have already clinched first in their Champions League group—before Villa.