Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard, 43, has taken on a new challenge in his managerial career by joining Al Ettifaq in Saudi Arabia on a rumoured 2 year deal. This move follows a trend of high-profile players transitioning to the Saudi Arabian league, which is showing signs of competitiveness ahead of the 23/24 season.
Gerrard's appointment at Al Ettifaq marks his third managerial job since he ventured into management in 2018 with Rangers. His time at Rangers was highly successful and memorable, as he achieved a record-breaking season for the Scottish club, leading them to an invincible campaign. In the famous 2020/21 season, Rangers secured the title of "Centurions" by finishing with 102 points, conceding a mere 13 goals across 38 matches. This remarkable achievement earned Gerrard his first trophy as a manager.
Following his success at Rangers, Gerrard's contract was bought out by Aston Villa after they dismissed Dean Smith. Although Gerrard's tenure at Aston Villa was considered average in terms of results, it provided him with valuable experience managing in the Premier League. However, Aston Villa decided to part ways with Gerrard in October 2022 and replaced him with Spanish manager Unai Emery, who has brought great success to the team thus far.
Gerrard's appointment at Al Ettifaq may appear unusual, but it could be a crucial step in his managerial career. It provides him with an opportunity to further enhance his resume for future endeavours while facing challenges against some of the elite players who have recently joined Saudi Arabian clubs, including the likes of Karim Benzema at Al-Ittihad and Cristiano Ronaldo, who plays for Al Nassr.