Steven Gerrard to be given guard of honour at Anfield finale
Steven Gerrard will experience a guard of honour at Anfield this weekend, as the Liverpool captain prepares for his final game on home turf.
After standing to greet the Premier League champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Sunday, Gerrard will be offered the courtesy of being applauded on to the pitch by the other 21 players on Saturday.
The Merseyside club will pay tribute to their departing captain ahead of the meeting with Crystal Palace, Gerrard's last match at Anfield and penultimate Liverpool appearance before his summer move to LA Galaxy.
The Liverpool and Palace players will welcome Gerrard from the players'
tunnel, and the club also intend to organise a mural on the Kop to acknowledge the 17 years of service Gerrard has given the first team, 11 of which have been as the club's captain.
Gerrard has requested that the game does not become too much of a circus focused on his last Anfield appearance, but inevitably he will be the centre of attention given that Liverpool's Champions League hopes are now effectively over.
A similar farewell was granted to Jamie Carragher in 2013, when the defender, accompanied by his children, led the side out for his last game. The difference this time is that Gerrard will still have another Premier League fixture at Stoke City the following week.
Gerrard is unlikely to be the only Liverpool player expecting an emotional farewell, as other senior players bow out. Glen Johnson's contract has not been renewed, and he is attracting interest from Schalke, West Ham and Napoli.
Another who may find this weekend's end-of-season farewells particularly poignant is Lucas Leiva, who has been considering his future for the past 12 months amid interest from abroad, notably Napoli. (© Daily Telegraph, London)