Mourinho wanted to secure Gerrard and form devastating midfield trio…
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has claimed that he once moved heaven and earth to sign Steven Gerrard, planning on partnering our skipper with Claude Makelele and Frank Lampard in midfield, reports BBC Sport.
“We did everything to try [to sign him] and it was almost there,” said Mourinho.
“I was dreaming of Claude Makelele, Gerrard and Frank Lampard in midfield.”
Mourinho added: “We were playing in a proper triangle without a number 10 and playing Maka in front of the defenders. Me, Mr Abramovich and [former Chelsea chief executive] Peter Kenyon at that time, we dreamed of that.
“His people were open to him joining a top side like Chelsea. But to me personally he never said he would come. Never.
“He [Gerrard] was always a red and I think the decision was right.”
The comments from the outspoken Portuguese come ahead of the League Cup semi-final first leg, which is taking place at Anfield on Tuesday evening.
Steven Gerrard is facing a race against time to be fit for the tie, having missed Saturday’s victory over Aston Villa with a hamstring issue that he picked up the week previous at Sunderland.
With Lucas and Jordan Henderson performing so well in central midfield recently, there’s much debate as to where the captain will be slotted back into the mix. He could possibly form part of the front three as he did against the Black Cats for the first 45 minutes, but this would mean Fabio Borini dropping to the bench, and Raheem Sterling moving to the central striking role.
Mourinho’s quotes however highlight the respect the footballing world has for our captain. In 2005 when the Blues most aggressively pursued him, Gerrard was arguably the best midfielder on the planet, having just led us to a brilliant Champions League victory.
Now aged 34, Gerrard is now longer the dynamic force he once was, but he has the passing ability and leadership skills to be a serious asset from now until the end of the season.