Fresh off of winning both Liverpool’s and the Premier League’s Player of the Month awards, Trent Alexander-Arnold is ready to face Steven Gerrard’s Aston Villa tomorrow. When asked about facing his childhood hero on the touchline, he emphasized how focused the squad is on getting a win.
On keeping their eyes on the prize, i.e., winning the game:
“It will be strange. The fans, it will obviously bring back a lot of memories for them. It will be good for him to return to where it all happened for him personally. As players and people who are so close to it, we can’t really let our feelings get involved.
“For me, growing up him being such an influential person for me – watching him and admiring him so much – I need to try to put that to one side and focus on the game and it’s about winning that game, that’s all that matters.”
On what Steven Gerrard has meant to him:
“Someone who made a lot happen. Someone I massively looked up to. The heart and soul of the club for many years, someone who embodied everything about the club. Someone it was really hard not to look up to; I think even opposition fans and people who wanted to hate him, you had to respect what he was doing on the pitch.
“Showed a level of consistency not many players can, over a long, long period of time. There was a lot for me, growing up, that I admired about him.”
On getting to learn from Gerrard while he was an Academy player:
“He was coming down now and then to do his coaching badges. It was good to get an insight into his way of life and obviously the way he saw the game. It was important for me to try to learn and study, and good to pick his brain from time to time and learn from him really.
“At a young age not many people get the chance to meet their heroes and effectively be trained and taught by them. It was massive for me, I was grateful for that.”