How Acquired: LA Galaxy signed midfielder Steven Gerrard to Designated Player January 7, 2015
2015: After his midseason arrival, Gerrard went on to start 13 games in 13 appearances with the Galaxy. He scored two goals and tallied three assists in the time while earning MLSsoccer.com Player of the Week selection in his debut week, Week 20 vs. San Jose.
Gerrard, 34, joined the Galaxy following one of the most storied careers in Liverpool and English football history. In 17 seasons with Liverpool, the team’s longest-serving captain made over 700 appearances while scoring more than 180 goals to date in all competitions. Gerrard also has served as captain for England, making 114 appearances and scoring 21 goals on the international level, most recently captaining his country during the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
The midfielder joins the Galaxy after leading Liverpool to 10 major trophies over the past 15 years, including the UEFA Champions League (2005), UEFA Cup (2001), UEFA Super Cup (2001, 2005), FA Cup (2001, 2006), FA Community Shield (2006) and League Cup (2001, 2003, 2012). Individually, he has earned honors as the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Young Player of the Year (2001), PFA Player of the Year (2006), Football Writers’ Association (FWA) Footballer of the Year (2009), PFA Fans’ Player of the Year (2001, 2009), PFA Team of the Year (2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2014), FA England Player of the Year (2007, 2012), UEFA Club Footballer of the Year (2005) and FIFA’s Ballon d’Or Bronze Award (2005).
The Merseyside product joined the Liverpool Academy at the age of nine before signing his first professional contract with the club in 1997 as a 17 year old. He made his debut with the Reds on Nov. 29, 1998 as a second-half substitute in a match against Blackburn Rovers and went on to play in 12 more games during his debut season. His first goal came the following season during a 4-1 win at Anfield against Sheffield Wednesday.
Gerrard won his first major honors with Liverpool during the 2001 season, when he helped his club capture the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Super Cup while making 50 appearances across all competitions. That year, he was named the PFA Young Player of the Year. After serving as a vice-captain the following year, Gerrard became Liverpool’s full-time captain in 2003, holding the title since that time.
For his country, Gerrard has represented England at three FIFA World Cup competitions (2006, 2010, 2014) while serving as the team’s captain during the 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups. He also represented his country at the UEFA European Football Championships in 2000, 2004 and 2012. His 114 caps for England are the third most of any English international in history.
The Englishman’s international debut with the England senior squad came a day after turning 20 when he appeared in a match against Ukraine at Wembley Stadium on May 31, 2000. He represented England later that year in the 2000 UEFA European Football Championship. Gerrard’s first goal for England came in 2001 when he scored the second goal of a 5-1 rout over Germany during a 2002 FIFA World Cup Qualifying match in Munich, helping his side secure a spot in the 2002 FIFA World Cup.