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Liverpool FC will reward Steven Gerrard's outstanding contribution to their Premier League title challenge with a new contract this summer.
The long-serving skipper's current deal expires at the end of next season but Brendan Rodgers wants Gerrard to spearhead the Reds' pursuit of glory beyond that.
Liverpool intend to offer him a 12-month extension to keep him at Anfield until his 36th birthday in 2016.
Gerrard has flourished this term in a new role as a deep-lying playmaker and Rodgers recently described him as the best controlling midfielder in Europe.
"Steven will be one we look to get a contract to in the summer," Rodgers told the ECHO.
"With a year to go, it's something we will address.
"I believe Steven will play beyond 2015. He is a player who has really shown his qualities this season.
"Come the summer, he will still only be 34. Looking towards the future, I still think he's going to be a key part of our squad.
"He has dropped into a new position and played it seamlessly. His intelligence in the game is second to none. He is improving all the time.
"It's one where he has been brilliant for me as a captain and as a player this season and I would like that to continue.
"Most clubs, especially bigger clubs, recognise now that once a player gets over a certain age you have to look at a contract's duration.
"But for me Steven still has so much to offer and I really want him beside me here working on the field."
Gerrard currently stands third in the club's all-time appearance list having played 667 games and he's sixth in the list of goalscorers on 173.
This is his 16th campaign at Anfield and as well as scoring 13 league goals this term he has also chipped in with 10 assists.
If he remains a key part of the side until 2016 he could even surpass Jamie Carragher's tally of 737 appearances.
The ringing endorsement of his enduring class is a timely boost for Gerrard following the heartache of last weekend's defeat to Chelsea which dented the Reds' title hopes.
Gerrard's slip enabled Demba Ba to net the opening goal and Rodgers' side couldn't summon a response prior to Willian's late effort.
The manager believes his captain is ready to take out his frustration on Crystal Palace on Monday night as the Reds look to set up a thrilling final day shootout for the title.
"Everyone had empathy for Steven," Rodgers added.
"The mistake obviously changed the course of the game and he was just unfortunate.
"Steven was hurting like we all were. Steven's quest is not for himself, it's more about the team and doing it for the supporters.
"This is a player who has picked himself up after disappointments many times over his career here at Liverpool and he will do it again. He has carried this club throughout his career.
"He's a real good man and I have just reinforced to Steven this week what an influential player he is for our team.
"There is no blame attached to him because he has been instrumental in where we are to this day and he will continue to be in the coming years.
"Steven has been brilliant on the training field this week. He has narrowed his focus like the team has and now we're looking to playing Crystal Palace."
Source: Liverpool Echo
Author: Liverpool Echo Tagged:
, steven gerrard
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