In an exclusive interview, Steven Gerrard talks about his delight at being named LFC captain and why he hopes he'll be able to lift a trophy this season for the fans

Did the news that you were to be made captain come as a surprise?

It did really. The manager has always said that I would captain Liverpool Football Club one day but it was a bit of a shock yesterday when Gerard told me I was to be captain from now on. I have to say I'm absolutely thrilled.

It must be a dream come true considering you used to support the team as a kid?

Definitely. I was captain of my school side and I used to go along to Anfield to watch the team and I always looked up to people like John Barnes who captained the team during the 90s. I used to watch Barnes with the captains armband and dream that one day it would be me captaining the team I love.

Do you think this new responsibility will have a positive effect on your game?

I hope so, definitely. I'm very happy with my form at the moment but in the future I'm sure this role will help me grow as a player. I'm looking forward to the responsibility and I think my game has matured since I first made the breakthrough into the first team. I want to blossom into a world class player - something I'm not yet - and hopefully captaining Liverpool will help me achieve that ambition.

Sami is now one of the club's vice captain - have you spoken to him since your appointment?

I spoke to Sami yesterday when the boss told me the news and he congratulated me. There are no hard feelings between Sami and me. He's a great person to have around the Club and he was a great captain for this team. He'll still be a leader on the pitch and he'll still lead the team from the back.

Sami lifted trophy after trophy for Liverpool as captain and vice capotain - you'll obviously be hoping you can be just as successful as he was?

Hopefully but I want to do as well as all the players who have captained Liverpool. We've had some great captains at this club - people like Alan Hansen, Phil Thompson, Graeme Souness, John Barnes - and hopefully I can follow in their footsteps and make a success of my role.

Finally, have you got a message for all the fans who have flooded onto the club's official Discussion Boards to wish you luck?

I'd just like to say that I'm delighted to be captain of Liverpool Football Club and I'm thrilled to be representing the fans on the pitch. Hopefully I can lift a trophy this season to say thanks for all the support from fans everywhere.