The Reds captain, who will play his final game at Anfield on Saturday, believes that the club must bring in a forward who will add significant firepower ahead of next season
Steven Gerrard believes that Liverpool must sign a striker capable of scoring 30 goals a season if they are to return to the Champions League.
The Liverpool captain is set to play his final game at Anfield against Crystal Palace on Saturday before departing for LA Galaxy at the end of the season.
And he has warned the Reds’ owners and manager Brendan Rodgers that the club must look to buy the finished article rather than emerging talent this summer.
“I wouldn’t buy any more potential in the short term. I would buy players that are ready to come and fight and be successful,” Gerrard told reporters.
“I can only go off the last 12 months. We have come mighty close in the cups, going out in two semi-finals, and in the league it was always going to be tough when we lost Luis [Suarez]. I thought we could definitely finish in the top four if we kept Daniel Sturridge fit.
“To get into the top four, you need strikers who can score 25-30 goals a season. That is just the way it is. That is where we came short this season.
“I obviously don’t want to stand on the owners’ or Brendan’s toes – I am just speaking as a fan and having an opinion on where Liverpool are at this moment – but that is what we need to do. We need to bring players in those forward positions that can score 25-30 goals and you will see Liverpool do an awful lot better next season.”
Gerrard announced his decision to leave his boyhood club for MLS side LA Galaxy – with whom he has signed a two-year contract – in January.
And the 34-year-old says that his mind was made up when Rodgers told him that he would have to accept a reduced role going forward.
“When you prepare from a Monday morning for a Saturday game and you don’t really know if you’re going to be involved, or you don’t get on when you have been a regular for so long, I think the buzz goes then,” Gerrard explained.
“At 35 years of age, I think it’s a nice challenge, an exciting challenge. I’m going to live in a fantastic place. I think the football is growing in MLS – I think the level is right for me where I am now.
“I’m 35 in a couple of weeks’ time and I’m not really sure how much more I could give the club at the level I’d like to give it. Going back to when I peaked, from 23 to 30 years of age, the reality is that I’m getting too old for this level and maybe a different level will suit me more.”