Steven Gerrard must push himself says Steve Clarke
Thursday 06 October 2011
Liverpool first-team coach Steve Clarke believes the time is now right for captain Steven Gerrard to step up his bid for regular football.
The England international was left out of Fabio Capello's squad for Friday's Euro 2012 qualifier in Montenegro as he has played just 56 minutes of football in three substitute appearances this season.
Gerrard's recovery from a groin operation in March took slightly longer than expected but Liverpool were not prepared to risk the 31-year-old until he was completely ready.
With more than a week until the club's next match, at home to Manchester United, Clarke hopes to see the influential midfielder start pushing himself further.
"For Steven it's just a progression. He's coming back from a long-term injury and we'll try to treat him as cautiously and carefully as we can," the Reds coach told liverpoolfc.tv.
"Obviously there will be a time when he is going to have to push on - and I think this is the time now.
"We've only got a very small group of players left behind because we've got a lot away on international duty but we managed to get a lot of good work into them yesterday.
"With Steven it has been well documented that we're looking after him.
"He's going to have to push himself in the coming weeks - and the more minutes we get into him, the better."
Liverpool's medical and coaching staff believe they have covered every minor detail in managing Gerrard's comeback, tailoring his rehabilitation with specifically designed programmes.
"After you've been out for a long time, you struggle with the pace of the game and the size of the pitches," Clarke added.
"So we worked with him in small areas and then gradually started to make the areas bigger. Every step is important.
"He's handled the steps we've given him so far very well and we'll just look to push him on."
Latest in Sport
Manchester United transfer news: Javier Hernandez close to exit as Atletico Madrid admit interest
Manchester United transfer news: Mats Hummels, Thomas Vermaelen and Daley Blind on radar as Louis van Gaal reveals he still wants to sign defender
Scottie dogs in Commonwealth Games opening ceremony 'disrespectful to Muslims', say Malaysian politicians
Divock Origi joins Liverpool before immediately being loaned back to Lille
Seydou Keita refuses Pepe handshake before throwing water bottle prior to Roma vs Real Madrid match
- 1 Sabina Altynbekova, the girl branded 'too good looking' for volleyball, says social media obsession with her is a 'bit much'
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 4 'Women should not laugh in public,' says Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister in morality speech
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
A day in the life of Vladimir Putin: The dictator in his labyrinth
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us