Adding one more depressing moment to the end of Steven Gerrard’s Liverpool career, the Reds lined up on the pitch at Stamford Bridge to give Chelsea a guard of honor before their match on Sunday. Chelsea clinched the Premier League title last week against Crystal Palace to earn the traditional show of respect from their next opponent.
So, before one of his last matches in a Liverpool shirt, Gerrard had to applaud team that included Ruben Loftus-Cheek, a 19-year-old midfielder making his first start, for winning a title he never did. It’s the kind of moment that would prompt someone to kick John Terry in the chest and shout, “I! Will! Not! RETIRE!” but he didn’t do that.
He did, however, score an equalizer just before halftime after Chelsea fans spent much of the first half singing about his past failings. And when he exited the match in the 79th minute, he was given a standing ovation.
After the match, Gerrard revealed that the ovation didn’t do anything to mend his hurt feelings.
“I was more happy with the ovation from the Liverpool fans,” he said. “Chelsea fans have shown respect for a couple of seconds for me, but they slaughtered me all game, so I’m not going to get drawn into wishing the Chelsea fans very well. Nice of them to turn up for once.”
With that, more Chelsea fans suddenly wished they followed this man’s lead…