Steven Gerrard has been extremely active this summer in an attempt to ensure Aston Villa’s success for the coming season.
One position which he has certainly strengthened is central midfield, with Boubacar Kamara coming on a free to add a more defensive option.
This leaves the door open for him to add one more, with a box-to-box midfielder with an attacking flair the likely pick.
It is, therefore, no surprise to see him in the market for Liverpool’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, with Football Insider reporting that Gerrard is a “huge” admirer. He is reportedly available for just £10m.
Perhaps Gerrard sees a little bit of himself in the 28-year-old and feels that with the correct management he could have a similar impact on his Villa side that he did on Liverpool all those years ago.
The midfielder has seen his playtime at Anfield dwindle over the years due to a mix of injuries and Jurgen Klopp’s reinforcements to counter that.
In the last campaign in which he was not ravaged by injuries, in 2018/19, he recorded 11 goal contributions in all competitions. Perhaps given a decent run in a team with considerably fewer expectations, he can recapture this kind of form.
Last season, however, when he did feature he impressed, sitting in the 96th percentile for progressive carries, the 99th percentile for shots total and the 96th percentile for progressive passes received in comparison to midfielders in Europe’s big five leagues.
He could bridge the gap between Kamara and the attack and would pair well with the Frenchman due to his 4.32 progressive passes per 90.
Back in his playing days, Gerrard enjoyed late entries into the box and scoring goals of all kinds. He did have a particular fondness for scoring a screamer or two, which is also similar to Oxlade-Chamberlain in that regard.
Perhaps giving this forgotten man one last chance as he enters his prime years could prove incredibly profitable for Villa and help them further bridge the gap between them and the big six.