Former Liverpool manager Gerard Houllier believes Steven Gerrard should follow Zinedine Zidane’s path to management if he wants to forge a successful coaching career.
Gerrard retired from football last year after a spell in the MLS, before the Reds decided to snap up him a couple of months ago as a coach at the academy.
However, Jurgen Klopp today virtually confirmed reports that Gerrard would be taking up the role of manager at the Liverpool U18s next season.
“There is not a real announcement in this moment, but what I can probably say is ‘yes’,” Klopp told the club’s website on Thursday.
“He is doing a real job at the Academy at the moment with his presence and everything, being around and giving advice and leading little or bigger sessions and all that stuff.
“They all enjoy it a lot. He especially enjoys it a lot. Yes, he will be the coach of a youth team next season, I’m pretty sure. But we will tell you exactly which team when we want to tell you.”
It may be coming slightly fast for Gerrard considering his lack of experience, but it means the world to Liverpool fans that the club are keeping their former captain within their walls.
Gerrard’s path to management – the 36-year-old is being tipped by many to succeed Klopp one day – draws similarities to that of Zidane’s.
The Italian was sacked and then replaced by Rafa Benitez, but once the Spaniard was also given the boot Zidane was told to fill the spot – something Houllier believes Gerrard should look at copying.
“What I would advise Stevie is to do the different steps,” Houllier told talkSPORT.
“[Zinedine] Zidane is at the moment in charge of the Real Madrid team, but before that for four years he coached the youth, then the reserves, then he became an assistant manager to Carlo Ancelotti. Then he went back to the reserves, and then he was ready. At the same time he took his qualifications, so he prepared himself.
“You’ve got to be patient. You can’t step from players’ life and players’ activities to coaching. If he [Gerrard] is patient and does the various steps, then maybe he will be the next one [manager] after Jurgen Klopp.”
Gerrard was actually approached by MK Dons earlier this year to become their manager, but the former midfielder turned down the offer in order to climb up the ladder more slowly.