Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has revealed the details of his thought process when he was approached by both Real Madrid and Bayern Munich during his playing days.
It is no secret that Gerrard almost made the move to Chelsea to play under Jose Mourinho back in the mid-2000s. Staying at Anfield proved to be the best decision, as he went on to become a legend of the club.
Gerrard has stated in the past that he had interest from both Real Madrid and Bayern Munich, also, but those approaches do not get discussed to the extent that the approach from Chelsea does.
Had Gerrard made the move to Spain, he would have been playing under Mourinho, who became the Real Madrid manager in 2010.
“I think if all the Chelsea stuff didn’t happen and Mourinho, when he came for me around 2010, maybe you look back and think ‘imagine playing for Madrid for a year or two’,” Gerrard told the Greatest Game podcast.
“Imagine going and playing for Mourinho in the Champions League – that would’ve been an unbelievable experience. Of course it would. But it didn’t happen.
“Basically, Madrid wanted me to cause a war at Liverpool to get out. That was the only way that could’ve happened.”
Gerrard added in regards to the Bayern Munich approach: “I had a mad one as well after the Euros with Roy Hodgson. I think Schweinsteiger was coming to an end [of his time] at Bayern.
“We had some serious phone calls, and you think to yourself ‘Bayern Munich, how big are Bayern Munich? Imagine an experience going there’.
“But then that filters away and you think ‘hang on a minute, I’m Liverpool captain – why change? You’re already at a huge club, why would you want to affect your relationship with Liverpool?’”
Getting offers from such prestigious clubs would no doubt tempt anyone. However, it is great that Gerrard stayed loyal.
Making the move away from the club would have damaged his reputation throughout the Liverpool community. Sure, he could have won more elsewhere, but being loved and considered a legend of a huge club such as Liverpool would mean much more to him.