Former Liverpool midfielder Mohamed Sissoko has recalled Steven Gerrard’s emotional speeches ahead of the Reds’ Merseyside derby clashes with Everton, describing the former captain as “the type of leader who would die for his club and for his city”.
The former Mali international admits he learnt a lot from playing alongside Gerrard and has explained how he motivated players before the derby.
Speaking to FourFourTwo, Sissoko said: “Just watching Gerrard in training was a big lesson for me. He was the type of leader who would die for his club and for his city.
“Ahead of the derbies, he used to speak to the whole squad and say, ‘We need to win – I was born here and I’ve got to win. This is my jersey, my club and my city. I could die for Liverpool – now let’s go out there and do what we have to’.
“He didn’t have to raise his voice or get angry with other players. He had that ability to find the right things to say.”
Speaking last year, Gerrard named his all-time favourite moment from the Merseyside derby, picking his hat-trick at Anfield back in March 2012.
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He told Sky Sports : “It was when I scored the hat-trick. I had years of tonnes and tonnes of abuse off Everton fans from when I made my debut at 18-years of age.
“So to score a hat-trick against them at Anfield, that was obviously a special moment from a personal point of view.
“But, I mean, I was always someone who was all for the team. But any time that you experienced a derby victory as a player was always a special feeling.”