Gerrard focused on Liverpool
Out-of-form midfield ace Steven Gerrard insists he is fully focused on Liverpool's battle for a spot in next season's Champions League.
The Reds captain admits he has not been at the top of his game throughout a disappointing season for the Merseyside club. And with the World Cup coming at the end of the campaign, some believe that his lacklustre displays have been caused by distraction.
However, Gerrard has dismissed these suggestions, claiming he will leave everything on the pitch in each of Liverpool's remaining seven league games.
"The way I have played and the way I have trained since I was seven won't change now because of what is in the pipeline," he said.
"I have never shirked a tackle because of a game I am looking forward to. "If I have a cup final in two weeks and a friendly tomorrow I will go into that game, rattle someone, and if I get injured and miss the final then it's hard luck.
"If I get injured with Liverpool in the next eight games and miss the World Cup I will get on with it.
"I want to be fit for every game and, of course, I am desperate to go to South Africa. But I would not ease up on Liverpool for England because of it.
"I would never take it easy. That's nonsense. I will go full throttle for both."
Gerrard has been a driving force behind Liverpool's success in recent years, which has seen the Reds win the Champions League, FA Cup and mount a serious assault on the Premier League title. But the 29-year-old says that setbacks are inevitable, as all players will eventually suffer from a dip in form.
"There have been certain whispers I've heard about myself, but because of the amount of time I have been at this club and what I have done, I would like to think people would understand the most important game for me is the next one," he added.
"You play football for 15 years and there are times when it cannot always be rosy; you cannot always be Roy of the Rovers, scoring and winning matches.
"Sometimes you have dips in form. How you react is important and how much you want to get back playing well. "I want that more than anything and I am sure I can finish the season well for Liverpool and then go into the World Cup playing good football.
"I know there have been times this season where I have not reached my best level, and I am still not totally happy with my form, but I certainly never lack confidence going on to a football pitch that I can affect a game.
"At the moment my main focus is not South Africa. It is finishing fourth for Liverpool and trying to get to the Europa League final."