‘Fans have been fantastic’

Steven Gerrard hailed England’s fans for their loyal support during his 14 years representing his country.

The Three Lions skipper announced his retirement from international football after 114 caps and says he always gave everything for them on the pitch.

And despite the team’s early exit at the World Cup group stage this summer, the 34-year-old will always remember the response he received from their following in Brazil. 

Watch the full interview with Steven Gerrard

“The England fans have been fantastic with me from day one,” said Gerrard as he told TheFA.com about his decision.

“I’d like to think that my performances have shown effort and determination; I’ve given everything I can for England, every time I’ve gone out,” 

“Admittedly I’ve never always hit top form, but I think the basics and what is required when you put an England shirt on is to give 100 per cent, fight, give your best and I’d like to think I’ve always given that. And it’s for the supporters.” 

He added: “What I’ll always remember the supporters for is the reception they gave me after the Costa Rica game. We’d just gone out of the World Cup at the first stage, it hadn’t gone well for me personally, or for the team, and they gave me an unbelievable reception. 

“That’s what’s sticking in my mind.”

Illustration of Steven Gerrard by AJ Dimarucot for the England v Denmark programme

A special illustration remembers Gerrard’s last England goal

Gerrard’s first appearance for England came at Wembley in 2000 and he went on to become a firm favourite with their loyal fans.

He wore the armband 38 times and remembers the 5-1 win in Munich, where he scored the first of his 21 England goals, with great fondness.

Meanwhile, his strike against Poland in October, that sent the Wembley crowd wild as their place at the World Cup was confirmed, was also a highlight.

“I’m really proud of the journey I’ve been on.” said the Liverpool midfielder. “It’s been full of ups and downs. 

“To sit here on 114 caps and be able to say I beat Germany 5-1 in their back yard and also score a very important goal to help England qualify for this recent World Cup – in amongst a lot of frustration and negatives – there are some unbelievable highs that I’ll live with for a very long time.”

Watch the exclusive full-length interview with Steven Gerrard in the player above