Steven Gerrard Disappointed By Sami Hyypia's Decision To Leave Liverpool

Stevie G is finding it hard to imagine life at Anfield without the towering Finn...

Liverpool skipper Steven Gerrard admits he is saddened by Sami Hyypia's decision to leave the club in the summer, though made clear that he completely understands the big Finn's decision.

The 35-year-old will be marshalling the defence of Bundesliga outfit Bayer Leverkusen next term, after having done that job so exceptionally well at Anfield for the better part of the last ten years.

"I understand the reasons behind Sami's decision to go because he's got a two-year deal, so good luck to him," Gerrard was quoted as saying by The Sun.

"But for selfish reasons I wish he would stay for another season here because he's such a fantastic player and great to have around the place.

"He's been here for the whole time I've been in the first team and has been a great influence and magnificent servant - an absolute legend."

Hyypia has already stated his intent to return to the club in a coaching capacity some day, which is something that Gerrard has wholeheartedly endorsed.

"I sincerely hope he comes back as a coach one day, because he can bring so much with him and impart so much knowledge," added the Reds skipper.

"He knows how Liverpool Football Club works.

"He's a great character and I could see him playing a big role in developing the youngsters, the reserves and even the first team in time.

"I took over from him as captain in 2003 and there was some controversy at the time, but not from Sami, who was incredibly supportive of me from the very start.

"That is a measure of the man. He should be regarded as a one of the greats of this club and I don't say that lightly.

"He has certainly helped transform Liverpool and got us back to where we should be."

Hyypia, who has not featured for the Reds' first team since playing a role in their 4-1 demolition of Manchester United at Old Trafford, could well make his farewell appearance at Anfield on Sunday, when Liverpool face Tottenham Hotspur in the concluding fixture of the Premier League campaign.

Derek Wanner,

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