LONDON • Liverpool's former captain and talisman Steven Gerrard will return to his roots as part of the Academy's coaching set-up, the Premier League club announced on Friday.
Gerrard, who made 710 appearances for his boyhood club during 17 years at Anfield, will begin his new role next month.
"It feels like completing the circle, returning to the place where professionally it all began," the 36-year-old told the club's website (www.liverpoolfc.com).
"However, this isn't a decision based on emotion - it's about what I can offer and contribute to Liverpool."
Gerrard ended his playing career in November when he announced his retirement a week after confirming he would not be returning to play for Major League Soccer side LA Galaxy.
He had also declined an offer from League One side MK Dons to be their manager after returning to England from the United States.
But a return to Liverpool in some capacity has always been on the cards and news that he will be working with the club's youngsters will be welcomed by his adoring fans.
When Steven Gerrard will start his new role as a Liverpool academy coach.
He will work under Academy manager Alex Inglethorpe at the club's Kirkby complex.
"I don't think I need to explain to people what this football club means to me," added Gerrard, who famously led Liverpool to an unlikely Champions League final win over Milan in 2005.
"When I knew coming back was a serious option, I wanted to make sure it was a substantive role and a role in which I could really help the organisation.
"Meeting with Alex Inglethorpe, seeing the work they are currently doing and want to do in the future at Kirkby, it just felt right. The right option at the right time.
"This gives me a great opportunity to learn and develop as a coach, while at the same time offering my knowledge, ideas and experience to the young players at an important period of their development."
Gerrard, often talked about as a future Liverpool manager, scored 186 goals for the club, winning two FA Cups and three League Cups as well as the Champions League.
Inglethorpe welcomed the appointment.
"If I was to pick one individual who embodies the characteristics and values we are looking to instil into our organisation at Kirkby, it would be Steven Gerrard," he said.
"For him to have been so enthusiastic about being part of what we are looking to do is simply great news for everyone connected to the club."
The role is likely to be revisited in the summer, when it could become more defined. It will also allow Gerrard to continue his work as a pundit with BT Sport.
REUTERS, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, THE TIMES, LONDON