Steven Gerrard is joining the LA Galaxy, according to ESPN FC. Liverpool announced that he would be leaving the club when his contract expired after the season and Gerrard later confirmed that he would be going to MLS. Nearly every rumor had him signing with the Galaxy, and now that has come to be.
The Galaxy have a Designated Player spot open after the retirement of Landon Donovan, who helped LA win MLS Cup in 2014. Now Gerrard joins on an 18-month contract that will pay him $6 million per year, according to ESPN FC. He'll join a team that has league MVP Robbie Keane and 19-goal scorer Gyasi Zardes, giving LA some of the most talented attackers in MLS.
Gerrard will not join the Galaxy until July. He has to finish the season with Liverpool and then he'll have some rest before suiting up for the Galaxy. It will be interesting to see what kind of fitness he has, considering he spent last summer with England at the World Cup and will not have a full summer off this season, something that is concerning for a player who will be 35 years old by the time he pulls on an LA shirt.
LA has made a habit of signing players who made their names in the Premier League. First they brought in David Beckham, then Keane and now Gerrard. They have even done so with non-superstars, like Carlo Cudicini. It's clear that they have a taste for big names, both because they get that notoriety because of their play and because they can bring star power to a club that has always yearned for it in a market that embraces it.
Exactly how Gerrard will fit in the LA team remains to be seen. The Galaxy have two good central midfielders in Juninho and Marcelo Sarvas, as well as Keane and Zardes up top. Gerrard won't play on the wing, so LA will have to change their setup to fit the Englishman in. That almost assuredly means shifting from the 4-4-2 they play in 2014, but it could be to a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1. Regardless, it will likely be a very fluid formation, as Galaxy manager Bruce Arena has not instilled much rigidity for years. With Robbie Rogers as a a marauding left back and a slew of technical players, they are afforded the flexibility to considering unbalanced formations too, so exactly how Gerrard fits and what Arena does is completely up in the air.