Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard reacts to controversial Jurgen Klopp derby celebrations

Former Liverpool and England midfielder Steven Gerrard (Picture: Getty)Steven Gerrard has defended Jurgen Klopp after the Liverpool manager’s controversial celebration to the injury-time winner in the Merseyside derby.

Klopp sprinted onto the pitch and hugged goalkeeper Alisson after Divock Origi scored a dramatic and bizarre winner against Everton.

The German boss was subsequently fined £8,000 and warned about his future conduct by the Football Association.

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But Liverpool legend and current Rangers boss Gerrard understands Klopp’s reaction and says it is one of the reasons fans love the sport.

The former England midfielder said: ‘He ran about 30 yards less than me when I celebrated a goal!

‘Listen, it’s an emotional sport and an emotional game. You win a derby in the 96th minute, emotions naturally take over your body and your decision making.

‘I can understand it. I love Jurgen Klopp for who he is. He’s real, he’s authentic.

Jurgen Klopp was fined for his celebrations (Picture: Getty)‘Of course, us as managers have a responsibility to try and tame it as much as we can, but sometimes that it is difficult.

‘He’s come out and apologised and it is what it is. I think there is a big problem in this sport if we take celebrating out of it.

‘It’s not the reason why we love Jurgen Klopp, but is (Jose) Mourinho not famous for sprinting down the touchline? Do the viewers not love this?’

Gerrard added: ‘Of course, you open yourself up to be punished, but I don’t think we can actually criticise people for being emotional.

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‘I love that side of people. I love it when they are real and let themselves go.

‘Of course you must respect the opposition managers and coaches, but to celebrate a big win or a big goal, I want that to stay.’

Liverpool, whose 1-0 victory over Everton ensured they remain just two points below leaders Manchester City, face Burnley this weekend.

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Trent Alexander-Arnold reveals the two Liverpool legends he wants to emulate

Alexander-Arnold wants more (Picture: Getty)In many ways, Trent Alexander-Arnold is already living the dream. But the Liverpool full-back is far from done yet.

The right-back is a boyhood Liverpool fan and has become a regular under Jurgen Klopp – and he’s already a fan favourite.

But Alexander-Arnold is setting his sights high, and he’s hoping to emulate two of his childhood heroes Steven Gerrard and Jamie Carragher to become a club legend.

‘I definitely feel that closeness too,’ Alexander-Arnold told the Liverpool Echo.

‘It’s very special. The supporters have a special place in my heart. They have always shown me support and love.

Alexander-Arnold wants to emulate Gerrard (Picture: Getty Images)‘They have turned never on me. Even when times have been hard, they have always stood by me. That’s really helped me through some tough games and tough performances when things haven’t gone great.

‘I’m just fortunate to play for my boyhood club and for people to be able to see that dreams can come true. Hopefully the younger people in the city see it too.

‘I saw Gerrard and Carragher do it when I was young. I always wanted to be them.’

One thing Carragher and Gerrard did that this current crop of Liverpool stars are yet to is win silverware – and Alexander-Arnold is hoping he can break that duck by the end of this season.

‘My aim is to replicate things that legends do,’ he added. ‘You don’t get much more of a legend than Steven Gerrard at this club.

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‘I still have to pinch myself when I think about the past few years. I’m living my dream and it’s hard sometimes to believe I’m doing that. It’s a source of great pride for me and my family to be part of this club.

‘Just to be able to say you have played for Liverpool once is something very special. Even saying that now means everything to me. That’s why my debut against Tottenham in the League Cup is still the highlight for me so far.

‘Hopefully there are a lot of games and a lot of silverware to come. I want to stay here as long as I can and win as much as possible in my career.

‘We have come close, especially last season with the run to Kiev. We didn’t quite get over the line but it’s given us extra motivation to make that next step. Come May, hopefully we’ll have a trophy.’

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Jurgen Klopp first to start party after Champions League heartbreak, says Steven Gerrard

Klopp has suffered three cup final defeats with Liverpool (Picture: Getty)Jurgen Klopp was the first to start the party after Liverpool lost heartbreaking cup finals in the Champions League and Europa League, according to Steven Gerrard.

The German has appeared in three major finals as Liverpool boss and has lost each one, with the latest heartbreak coming in the Champions League in May against Real Madrid.

Liverpool have improved again since that defeat and Klopp is now targeting a Premier League title tilt this season.

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Gerrard, a former Liverpool captain and current Rangers manager, explained he admires Klopp because the coach knows when to switch off.

He told the Guardian: ‘I was like a sponge, watching and learning. I watch him on TV and see how he handles situations.

‘I could never be Jurgen with his charisma and energy. But if I can take a few things from him it will be such a help.

Former Liverpool captain Gerrard watches Klopp closely (Picture: Getty)‘And if I text, call or see him, Jurgen’s always got time for me,’ he said.

‘Jurgen’s really good at switching off. When the game is on he’s very emotional but once it’s over he can park the emotion.

‘That’s why he’s so good at handling the pressure. After cup finals and a big setback he’ll be the one to start the party.

(Picture: Getty)‘Tomorrow is a different day and that’s a big lesson I have to learn.

‘I have to live my life outside football while still being a manager. It is difficult but I’m trying.’

Gerrard’s management career has started promisingly at Ranger with the Gers third in the Scottish Premiership, just two points behind leaders Celtic.

Steven Gerrard interrupts Rangers star Jordan Rossiter to shut down reporter

Steven Gerrard’s Rangers were dumped out of the Scottish League Cup by Aberdeen (Picture: Getty)Steven Gerrard showed his relentless side to send a ‘warning’ to his players after a mixed start to the campaign for Rangers.

Aberdeen knocked Rangers out of the Scottish League Cup at the semi-final stage at the weekend and Gerrard’s men sit a disappointing fifth in the league, seven points off leaders Hearts.

Liverpool academy product, Jordan Rossiter, has had several frustrating injuries since joining Rangers back in 2016 but was named on the bench on Sunday.

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While Rossiter was unused substitute at Hampden Park, the 21-year-old midfielder faced some tough questioning at a club press conference ahead of the side’s Scottish Premiership clash with Kilmarnock.

Gerrard had earlier suggested that players would be replaced if they continued to fail in the final third and Rossiter was pressed for a reaction to his manager’s comments.

Gerrard almost immediately jumped in to interrupt the youngster, stating: ‘I’ll answer that, it’s a warning. It’s for me, that. Not him. He’s been injured for two years.

‘At a big club you expect big players to step up on big occasions and provide big moments.

‘If that doesn’t happen, at any big club, then the manager and the recruitment find better players or players who will do that.’

Steven Gerrard’s side are sitting fifth in the Scottish Premiership (Picture: Getty)The legendary ex-Liverpool star believes he will come under increasing pressure unless his players begin to take responsibility on the pitch.

‘I watch closely and if they go into a shell then they’ve got a problem because you shouldn’t be at Rangers if you go into a shell,’ he said.

‘It’s the wrong place. They can’t do it. There’s been too many players here of late that are prepared to go into that shell. We can’t have them round here. It can’t happen.

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‘The business I am in, it is cut throat, it is brutal. If we keep suffering setbacks and results like that moving forward, I am not going to be here.

‘You have to be blunt. It is cut throat, that is the way it is.

‘Don’t sign up for it, don’t come here if you are not prepared to cope with that responsibility and pressure. You shouldn’t be here.’

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Steven Gerrard labels Liverpool star Roberto Firmino a ‘genius’ ahead of Chelsea clash

Roberto Firmino has been called a ‘genius’ by Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard (Picture: Getty)Steven Gerrard has labelled Roberto Firmino a ‘genius’ and says Liverpool are ‘very close’ to finding the perfect formula.

Brazilian forward Firmino scored in three consecutive games for Liverpool earlier in the month, helping the Reds make a fine start to the 2018-19 campaign.

Jurgen Klopp’s side are the only team yet to drop a point in the Premier League and defeated PSG in their Champions League opener at Anfield.

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Gerrard believes the current Liverpool team is the strongest in years and reserved special praise for Firmino, who has scored over 50 goals for the club since 2015.

The Anfield hero and Rangers boss said: ‘Firmino is an absolute genius when you watch him close up. He’s as interested in setting up a goal as scoring one.

‘I look at Liverpool now and can’t find any weaknesses when they’re at full strength.

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‘This is a lot stronger than the team I played in.

‘Liverpool have looked a different animal since [Virgil] van Dijk came in and Alisson brings more composure and trust.

‘In time that’ll be the big difference – the front three will always score goals and the midfielders back them up too.

‘But it’s all been about trying to improve defensively and they’re very close.’

Anfield hero Gerrard rates the current Liverpool team highly (Picture: Getty)Liverpool lost their first game of the new season during the week as they were knocked out of the Carabao Cup by Chelsea.

Klopp’s side will hope for revenge against the Blues on Saturday afternoon.

‘We try to use the information from [Wednesday] to be better on Saturday. Striking back is a nice opportunity,’ the Liverpool manager said.

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‘Before we started, it was clear the game at Chelsea would not be a children’s birthday.

‘It will be tough and intense for both sides. It’s a big one. It already sounds good, and we have to make sure it is good.’

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James Milner picks David Silva over Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard in dream team

The Anfield icon was at least named as super sub (Picture: Getty)James Milner has named Manchester City playmaker David Silva as the best midfielder he has played alongside ahead of Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard.

The 32-year-old was on Soccer AM to pick out his dream five-a-side team of players he has played with for either club or country, though opted to exclude current teammates for fear of upsetting the Liverpool dressing room.

When it came to picking a midfielder, he had plenty of world-class options to choose from but surprisingly snubbed Gerrard in favour of Silva.

Milner won two Premier League titles alongside Silva (Picture: Getty)Milner started off by running through his options, explaining: ‘At Man City obviously we had Yaya Toure in there, Gareth Barry – the career he’s had, most appearances in the Premier League. You don’t realise how good he is really until you see him week in week out.

‘Lamps [Frank Lampard], a ridiculous goalscorer. His numbers were phenomenal, even when he came to City at the end – the amount of goals he scored.

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‘Steven Gerrard, obviously. Unbelievable all-round player, could do absolutely everything. But I’m probably going to have to put David Silva in there.

‘Just as a player, his touch was ridiculous, weight of pass, creativity. He just did some things in training which were just ridiculous really.

Milner made some surprise choices in his five-a-side team (Picture: Soccer AM)‘Such a tough decision on the players I’m leaving out, I could have picked any one of them really, but I’ll probably go with David.’

Asked if Silva would have been perfect for a smaller sided game, Milner added: ‘David on the smaller side of the game – he can pick out a long pass as well – but his short passing, weight of pass, getting out of tight areas with two or three men around him, wriggles out, checks away and slots a little pass through. He was top class.’

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Liverpool complete transfer deal for England U17 star Bobby Duncan

Liverpool have reportedly clinched a deal for Bobby Duncan (Picture: Getty)Liverpool have secured a deal for England U17 star Bobby Duncan, reports say.

Duncan, who is the cousin of Liverpool and England legend Steven Gerrard, confirmed earlier in the week that he was to leave Manchester City.

He first signed for City when he was 11 but has been training away from the club for months and said it felt like the right time to ‘fulfill his potential’ elsewhere.

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Tottenham, Juventus and Monaco were all hoping to sign Duncan but Liverpool have won the race to secure his signature.

According to the Daily Telegraph, he will officially become a Liverpool player on July 1 after the Reds paid £200,000 to complete a deal.

‘It’s been an amazing six years at Manchester City,’ Duncan said this week.

Duncan is a regular for England U17s (Picture: Getty)‘It was a difficult decision for me and my family but the time is right for a new challenge and fulfil my dreams and potential elsewhere.’

Duncan is rated as one of the most talented teenagers in English football, having become the first Englishman to score a hat-trick against Brazil for the U16s.

The Liverpool-born striker has been persistently linked with a return to Merseyside and looks set to make the move official next week.

Duncan is the cousin of Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard (Picture: Getty)Meanwhile, new Liverpool signing Naby Keita has revealed his shock at being handed the number eight shirt by club legend Gerrard.

‘It was an incredible day for me,’ he told Liverpool’s official website. ‘Gerrard gave me the number eight jersey.

‘When it happened, it was a surprise and I didn’t expect it. When he came in, I looked and him and said “Wow” because he is a legend.

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‘He is somebody who always showed respect, who gave his all on the pitch, somebody who is loved here.

‘If somebody like that gives you his shirt number, it’s not to play around with, it is to try and do as much as he did – that’s my motivation.’

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Naby Keita handed famous no.8 shirt by Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard

Naby Keita has revealed he was personally handed the number eight shirt at Liverpool by club legend Steven Gerrard.

Keita is set to begin life as a Liverpool player on on 1 July after the club struck a deal to sign him from RB Leipzig for an undisclosed fee last summer.

Liverpool have confirmed the 23-year-old will wear the famous number previously worn by Gerrard, which has been left vacant since the former club captain left Anfield to join LA Galaxy in May 2015.

And Keita has now explained how the current Rangers boss, who was then managing Liverpool’s Under-18 side, surprised him upon his first visit to Anfield last summer to personally hand him the famous jersey.

‘It was an incredible day for me. He gave me the No.8 jersey. When it happened, it was a surprise and I didn’t expect it,’ Keita told Liverpool’s official website.

A deal for Keita was struck last summer. (Picture: Getty)‘When he came in, I looked and him and said, ‘wow’ because he is a legend. He is somebody who always showed respect, who gave his all on the pitch, somebody who is loved here.

‘If somebody lik that gives you his shirt number, it’s not to play around with, it is to try and do as much as he did – that’s my motivation.’

Keita will be joined at Anfield on 1 July by another summer arrival in Brazilian midfielder Fabinho. Liverpool confirmed a deal to bring the 24-year-old to the club from Monaco in May for a reported fee of £40m, coming in as a direct replacement for Emre Can who has left the club to sign for Juventus.

Liverpool could also revive their attempts to Lyon’s Nabil Fekir after the World Cup, where the attacking midfielder is currently on international duty with France.

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Liverpool to hand new signing Naby Keita iconic shirt number

The Guinean will link up with the squad for the first time for pre-season (Picture: Getty)Liverpool new boy Naby Keita will wear Steven Gerrard’s iconic No.8 shirt after personally requesting the number, according to reports.

The Guinean midfielder signed for Liverpool from RB Leipzig last summer in a deal worth £53million, though he remained with the Bundesliga club last season and is not officially a Liverpool player until July 1.

He has flown into Merseyside and is settling into life in the city ahead of his officially unveiling, while pre-season training begins at the start of next month.

The No.8 shirt has not been worn since Gerrard left the club three years ago (Picture: Getty)And now the Liverpool Echo report that Keita has been handed the No.8 shirt, a jersey that has not been worn since Gerrard left the club in 2015.

Keita has no reservations about wearing such an iconic shirt, and wore the same number at Leipzig.

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The 23-year-old has been posing for photographs and signing autographs with Liverpool fans since arriving in Merseyside, and is already writing the No.8 alongside his name.

Before Gerrard, Stan Collymore, Paul Stewart, Oyvind Leonhardsen and Emile Heskey have all worn the No.8 for Liverpool in the Premier League era.

Keita has very large boots to fill if he is going to replicate Gerrard’s performances (Picture: Getty)The club’s pre-season training begins on July 2, and Keita will be looking to make a big impression when he links up with Jurgen Klopp’s squad for the first time.

Keita will be competing with fellow summer arrival Fabinho for a place in Klopp’s starting XI, though a deal for Nabil Fekir collapsed just before the start of the World Cup.

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Steven Gerrard reveals he regrets not having a longer playing career

Gerrard scored in the Champions League final for Liverpool in 2005 (Picture: Getty)Steven Gerrard regrets not spending one more year as player before retiring from the sport.

Gerrard played for Liverpool between 1998 and 2015 before enjoying a two-season stint at MLS club where he played 38 times.

However, he retired in November 2016 and returned to UK to take up coaching within Liverpool’s youth set up.

But now, a new chapter has emerged in his career after taking up a managerial position at Scottish club Rangers ahead of the new season.

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‘I should have maybe played on for one more year. I regret not doing the extra year just because I miss playing so much,’ Gerrard said.

‘I speak to a lot of players who’ve come out of the game or players who are coming to the end, they couldn’t wait to get over the line to call it a day.

‘I knew towards the end that I was finding it tough letting go – that’s just the way I am. Emotionally, it was tough. When you love your job and you work so hard to achieve your dream job to play for your boyhood team but you know that’s coming to an end.

‘If you’ve had enough then it’s probably not tough. But I felt that my Liverpool days came to an end probably a year too soon.

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‘I went to LA Galaxy in America to come out of Liverpool, just to breathe. My wife got pregnant while I was out there in the MLS and it just made sense to come back home. My time in America was the perfect time.

‘Eighteen months was fine. It was enough. To go out and have a good think, a good debrief of my career, how it went. I can look back on it and be proud of the good times and reflect on the brutal times I had as well.’

Gerrard’s first fixture in charge of Rangers is at home to FK Shkupi in the first leg of their Europa League first qualifying round on July 12.

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