How Liverpool could look in 2024 under Gerrard with ‘Aston Villa stepping stone’

Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard has emerged as the overriding favourite to take the Aston Villa job after Dean Smith was sacked by the club following a fifth consecutive defeat.

The current Rangers manager has excelled since arriving in Glasgow in what was his first managerial role, but looks set to make his Premier League return, which could lead him to the dream job at Liverpool further down the road.

Gerrard won the Scottish Premiership with Rangers last term and did so without a single defeat, as the former Liverpool man demonstrated his impact in the dugout.

It appears time for Gerrard to experience the Premier League from a different perspective, and the Villa job could be the perfect stepping stone to the Liverpool role with Jurgen Klopp's future unknown.

Klopp's Liverpool deal expires in 2024 and there is speculation that the German could step down at the end of his contract, but his love for the club could lead to another extension.

However, Liverpool would have a club legend ready and waiting if Klopp was to call time on his Anfield journey, with up to three years Premier League experience should he take the Villa job.

Liverpool's side will look much different come 2024, with five transfer windows to come before the current expiry of Klopp's deal, meaning that Gerrard would be left a completely different side to the one that recently achieved Premier League success for the first time.

Who's rumoured to join?

Liverpool want to sign Jude Bellingham next summer in what could prove to be a club-record £80m deal, with some reports suggesting that the player wants the move.

The young England international has already excited fans on the biggest stage, and former Borussia Dortmund coach Klopp could be the perfect coach for Bellingham, who could be world-class by 2024.

Jarrod Bowen is also a name that is continuously mentioned when it comes to the Liverpool rumour mill, but central midfield remains the priority position at Anfield.

Liverpool are blessed thanks to steady recruitment, as players are all at a good age with the majority tied down to lengthy contracts, but their attack will also need tweaking in a few years, with Roberto Firmino the first to reach 30, and Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are close behind at the age of 29.

Who is likely to be gone

Should Liverpool appoint Steven Gerrard to succeed Jurgen Klopp? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Despite an incredible service, it's likely that not even James Milner will be able to keep up his impeccable fitness record for that long, and even club captain Jordan Henderson will be pushing 34 by the time 2024 rolls around.

Liverpool have ready made reinforcements at the back in Ibrahima Konate and Joe Gomez, as Joel Matip and Virgil van Dijk are both 30, and will slightly curving past their peak in a few years, although that seems impossible for the Dutchman.

Thiago Alcantara is also 30, but the midfielder could drop back and play many more years in midfield, but Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Divock Origi have both been linked with moves away.

Back-up goalkeeper Adrian is likely to be elsewhere as young Caoimhin Kelleher continues to flourish, and some may not realise that Lloris Karius is still at the club, years after his disastrous Champions League final performance against Real Madrid.

Who needs to be tied down?

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Salah, Salah, Salah. That has to be Liverpool's main priority above anything else as the winger's contract expires at the end of next summer, and the Egyptian is arguably the best in the world at the moment.

Talks over a new deal have taken place, but Salah is reportedly demanding a major pay-rise which could disrupt Liverpool's wage structure, but they can't afford to lose him.

Liverpool could be left with a big problem, as Firmino and Mane's deals also expire when Salah's does, and although it's unlikely, if they were all to leave it would be almost impossible to replace them instantly.

Naby Keita's deal also expires that summer, in what will prove to be a big period behind the scenes at Anfield.

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