Wednesday 14 March 2012
Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish and keeper Pepe Reina have lavished praise on skipper Steven Gerrard after his performance in Tuesday's 3-0 Barclays Premier League win against Merseyside rivals Everton.
Gerrard marked his 400th Barclays Premier League appearance in sensational fashion with a hat-trick which took his goal tally in the competition to 89.
"There is no way I could extol the virtues of Steven Gerrard and do him justice"
- Kenny Dalglish
Reds' manager Dalglish said Gerrard had left him lost for words as the skipper's display inspired a victory which helped banish memories of their recent run of three successive League defeats.
"I am not educated enough to add to whatever anyone else has said about Steven. He's been fantastic for this football club," Dalglish said.
"I left school at 15, my vocabulary is not that great. There is no way I could extol the virtues of Steven Gerrard and do him justice.
"Three goals was fantastic reward for him."
Goalkeeper Reina told the club's official website that Gerrard proved why he was a key man for Liverpool.
"He is an inspiration, on and off the pitch. He showed in the game he is fully fit now and he is coming back strong," he said.
"He is an inspiration, on and off the pitch"
- Pepe Reina
"We all love playing against Everton because they are special games. For local lads like Stevie, Spearo [Jay Spearing] or Carra [Jamie Carragher], those games mean a lot.
"And the rest of us know how important they are for the club."
Gerrard's hat-trick was the first treble in a Barclays Premier League Merseyside derby and the first time a player had reached that mark since Ian Rush hit four at Goodison Park in 1982.
It was the first Anfield hat-trick in the fixture since Fred Howe in 1935.
Dalglish said he hoped the win - which ended a run of three successive Barclays Premier League defeats for the Reds - would inspire the team to greater things.
Their next match is Sunday's FA Cup quarter-final against Stoke and Dalglish added: "We've got a really difficult game coming up on Sunday so we can enjoy this for a couple of days before looking forward.
"The season has not finished because we have won a game. We've got to carry on and do the best we can to win more games. If we play and compete like that, I'm sure we will."