LA Galaxy head coach and general manager Bruce Arena traveled to England to meet with Liverpool captain and midfielder Steven Gerrard before the start of the MLS season.
Galaxy president Chris Klein also accompanied Arena on the trip, which coincided with Liverpool’s Europa League round-of-32 first leg against Besiktas. Gerrard, whom the Galaxy recruited to sign without meeting in person prior to agreeing on a deal, did not play in the match because of an injured hamstring.
"He's first class. There’s no question about it," Arena told the LA Galaxy Insider. "He’s got his commitment to Liverpool that he will fulfill and then when he arrives, he will be everything that he can be."
Gerrard, 34, reportedly signed an 18-month contract as a Designated Player and won't join Los Angeles until July at the end of Liverpool's Premier League season, pending receipt of a P-1 visa and International Transfer Certificate.
"He may come over if his schedule permits before he arrives in June or July," Arena said. "He'd have a chance to get a feel for the city and other things, but he’s an experienced person and he will be able to adapt to regardless. I’m quite optimistic about that."
This season, Gerrard has 11 goals and one assist in 35 appearances.
The Galaxy are slated to open defense of their MLS Cup title against the Chicago Fire on March 6.
- Scooby Axson