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Last Updated: Wednesday, 6 July, 2005, 11:20 GMT 12:20 UK
Gerrard explains Liverpool U-turn
Steven Gerrard has revealed he admitted he wanted to quit Liverpool because he feared the club did not want him.

Liverpool's 25-year-old captain performed a dramatic U-turn and decided to stay at Anfield only hours after announcing he wanted to leave.

He told the Liverpool Echo: "The last five or six weeks were the hardest of my life because I wrongly believed the club didn't want me."

Gerrard is now expected to sign a new deal until 2009 on Friday.

After making his U-turn Gerrard offered to give up the Liverpool captaincy, an offer rejected by boss Rafa Benitez.

"It is true that he offered to give up the captaincy but I spoke to some players and our idea was the same - that Stevie should be our captain," said Benitez.

The Liverpool boss also insisted his dealings with Gerrard had always been cordial.

"My relationship with Steven is fine, it always has been," Benitez told the Liverpool website.

"I don't understand what I have been reading in the press. I am sure now that, if it's possible, our relationship will be even better."

Chairman David Moores, in a rare public statement, said: "He's changed his mind because he knew what he'd miss if he went elsewhere.

"He was confused, but we have kept our captain and it means a hell of a lot to me.

"We'd rather have done without it, but it will never happen again. It's end of story."

I feel there is a weight off my mind and I just want us to put this mess behind us
Steven Gerrard

Gerrard has now agreed a new contract worth about 100,000-a-week.

He said: "I don't want to get into attaching blame to anyone. If I blame anyone, it's myself.

"I wanted my future sorted out as soon as possible after the Champions League final and when that wasn't the case, the longer it went on, the more misunderstandings there were.

"There was confusion and doubt in my mind. I had discussions with the manager, but the reports of bust-ups are complete nonsense. Now I know how much the club wants me."

And Gerrard revealed he is ready to sign his new contract as quickly as possible.

He said: "I'll be signing the deal, maybe even today (Wednesday). I'd also like it known there are no clauses in that contract.

"I've committed my long-term future to the club and I want all the speculation to end now. This is what I've wanted all along."

Gerrard now hopes to put the crisis behind him after threatening to leave Liverpool for the second successive summer.

"I feel there is a weight off my mind and I just want us to put this mess behind us," he said.

"I've only one medal left to win at Liverpool and that's the Premiership. That's what I want more than anything and Liverpool is the only place I've ever wanted to win it.

"I know there are some fans who'll be supportive and some who won't be. All I can say is it's been a difficult period for me, but I know I've made the right decision.

"In my heart, this is my club. I want to help bring success here for them and, for their sake and my own, I never want to go through this again."




WATCH AND LISTEN
Interview: Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard


Interview: Liverpool chief executive Rick Parry


Interview: Liverpool Chairman David Moores




SEE ALSO
Gerrard in shock Liverpool U-turn
06 Jul 05 |  Liverpool
Chelsea fail in 32m Gerrard bid
05 Jul 05 |  Liverpool
Gerrard seems set to quit Anfield
04 Jul 05 |  Liverpool


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