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Benitez on Gerrard and his tactical awareness

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Not sure , whether I should put this in a new post.

Stevie is the man for me but...

Steven Gerrard has been told by new boss Rafael Benitez: "Change your style or you'll never be one of the midfield greats," reports The People.
The Spaniard's warning has come just days after he had his first taste of working with Liverpool and England's driving force.
The former Valencia coach confronted Gerrard with the stark truth that he's far from the finished article and it's vital he adds a more tactical dimension to his game.Benitez sees the 24-year-old as a key part of his plan to turn Liverpool into a force which can once again compete with the Big Three.
Gerrard was seen as one of Sven Goran Eriksson's flops as England tumbled out of Euro 2004 against Portugal in the quarter-finals.
Critics say he faded in the vital late stages of games and didn't consistently influence England's play.
But Benitez reckons he knows what the Anfield skipper must do to elevate himself alongside the very best.
"Sometimes when you see Steven Gerrard, he's a very, very good player," he said.
"But we need to work with him on tactical things. We just need to talk with him about the things we need to change. If we find ways of doing that, then we will have perhaps one of the best players in the world. His potential is really enormous."
Despite squeezing Liverpool into the Champions League, sacked boss Gerard Houllier was sacrificed after failing to make Liverpool competitive in the Premiership.
Benitez, though, has revealed the Liverpool hierarchy have promised to give him the time he needs to get it right at Anfield.
He said: "I was very happy Liverpool came for me. I had other possibilities - from another English club, Italy and Turkey. But the best offer was from Liverpool, not only because of their history, but also because their offer was of a five-year contract. For a manager that's very important because you have time to change things. If I'd made my decision on the basis of money, I might have gone elsewhere.
"Despite the urgency for success the club have told me we have time.
"I don't have a specific target this season and I'm not goingto say we have to win the Premier League in my first year, that would be crazy.
"What we have to do is improve. I will work every day with my staff - but I will not set impossible targets. The only target is to improve.
"I will look at the match video after we have played and if I see 10 mistakes, I will try to correct one. The next time I will try to correct another. And in three months maybe there will be only two mistakes in a game. That would be good enough."
As well as trying to make Liverpool less erratic, Benitez has been charged with encouraging a more expansive style to counter the "boring" accusations aimed at Houllier.
He said: "At Valencia last season we scored 71 goals, while Real Madrid scored 72. We conceded 27 and Real Madrid perhaps 40. So we had a balance - that is the most important thing.
"Here we have four good forwards in Michael Owen, Djibril Cisse, Milan Baros and Florent Sinama Pongolle, and my job is to find out how to get the best out of them.
"We'll do the things we need to do to suit the players we have."Benitez, whose side lost 1-0 to Porto in Toronto on Friday, twice outwitted wealthy Spanish giants Real and Barcelona to win La Liga, and the job of smashing the Arsenal-Manchester United title monopoly as well as contending with Chelsea's millions represents the same monster task. But he isn't fazed.
"All clubs have a small budget compared to Chelsea!" he said. "But that's not so important.
"Of course money can buy you better players. But sometimes you buy the players you don't need.
"We want players who know how to get the best out of each other. We are talking about closing a gap of 30 points on Arsenal and United, but if we work hard and the players really want to win, we can do it."


Good to see Rafa can see areas to improve Gerrard! Should help the lad to keep his focus. Last year Gerrard almost ran the game on his own for Liverpool at times, so an improvement in the teams performance will need to see Gerrard being a little more disciplined in some respects. Thats not meant as a criticism either, just that there should be no need for him to be everywhere all the time!!


I dont think Gerrard thought himself the finished product Im happy the way that rafa is dealing with the players, looking back on it GH wanted only a few players to shine and if they didnt or were injured hed use it as an excuse Rafa seems to be ready for anything


Some of Gerarrd's performances last season were magnificent, others he stood out as he was the lone 'madman' doing everything. And for this reason others in the team found it easy to hide away - players like Kewell and Murphy for example.

I'd like Stevie to look at himself tactically in a TEAM and learn his own 'role' and let others do theirs. With this in mind, I think Stevie can develop into the bext box to box player in the world - even better than Vieira and Gatuso.


you talk about him doing his own role but am sure he realises this but wants to win the us so badly he was compesating for other players not playing well

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