Thursday 8 December 2016

Steven Gerrard: I knew I was pi**ing into the wind trying to convince Toni Kroos to join Liverpool by text

Published 14/09/2015 | 15:30

Steven Gerrard tried to convince Toni Kroos to join Liverpool before the World Cup winner signed for Real Madrid before winning the World Cup with Germany in 2014.
Steven Gerrard tried to convince Toni Kroos to join Liverpool before the World Cup winner signed for Real Madrid before winning the World Cup with Germany in 2014.

Steven Gerrard has revealed he would text Liverpool's transfer targets in an effort to attract some star names to Anfield.

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In his autobiography, which is being serialised by the Daily Mail, the Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder revealed that he was asked by the club to make contact with their transfer targets to increase the chances of sealing the deal.

Willian and Toni Kroos were among those who the former Liverpool captain failed to convince to join his hometown club, and Gerrard revealed that he preferred to text rather than ring the coveted players.

He explains the process in the summer of 2013 when he contacted Brazilian midfielder Willian, who would eventually join Chelsea.

"I followed the usual routine when approaching a star player we wanted to sign," he said. "Instead of calling him directly I always sent a text. It seemed more respectful and allowed the player to read my message at a time when it suited him best. A cold call felt wrong."

Read more: Steven Gerrard on why Rafa Benitez didn’t like him, and injuring his penis

After exchanging pleasantries, the conversation took a familiar turn when the struggling Reds were unable to offer Champions League football.

"Willian thanked me and he said the usual, along the lines of, ‘I’d love to play with you, Steven, blah-blah-blah, but there are other clubs who play in the Champions League I need to talk to as well.’"

The following summer Rodgers ambitiously identified Toni Kroos as a primary transfer target, and again Gerrard was asked to get in touch with player who was soon to win the World Cup with Germany.

"Brendan asked me to take a crack at trying to talk Toni Kroos into signing for Liverpool. He smiled when I said we’d be p*****g into the wind with this one. I knew Real Madrid were gearing up to make Bayern Munich an offer and so I felt a bit awkward when I texted Kroos. The German was on his way to winning the World Cup with his country and Real were the champions of Europe. But God loves a trier, and so I gave it a whirl.

"Some of the best footballers in the world can also be the most respectful. Kroos didn’t make me feel like I was a total idiot. But, of course, he would soon sign for Real Madrid. We had a nice little exchange of texts and I said well done and good luck."

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