Gerrard thanks Rodgers after King makes loan move to Rangers
The Leicester midfielder will spend the season at Ibrox.
Steven Gerrard has thanked Brendan Rodgers for sending Leicester midfielder Andy King on loan to Rangers.
The 2016 Premier League winner has signed up for Gers title push after being given the green light by former the Celtic boss to make his season-long Ibrox move.
Gerrard admits the Light Blues would have struggled to match the wages the 30-year-old Wales international was earning at the King Power Stadium.
But he paid tribute to the Foxes for making the deal possible after watching his team cruise into the Europa League play-off round after completing a 7-3 aggregate win over Midtjylland.
Gerrard said: “This came very recently. We thank Leicester for the opportunity because you and I know from a financial situation there is no way in the world we can bring Premier League players in here.
“But when this opportunity came up I wanted to get it done and get it done quick because it was a fantastic offer we had to grab. It made total sense in every shape and form.
“I jumped at the chance for numerous reasons. One, he is a winner, a Premier League winner. Two, because he has had numerous caps at international level. Over the course of the last 14 months I have been trying to build a squad but a lot of the guys are very young – they need leadership and guidance in the dressing room. So It was a no brainer.
“He is hungry to play, he got an injury last year which frustrated him a lot. I spoke to him and he understands he has to work hard. But for the club and myself it is positive news.”
Gerrard was delighted as his side made easy work of Midtjylland with a 3-1 Ibrox win as they set up a play-off clash with Poles Legia Warsaw.
Alfredo Morelos put the tie to bed 14 minutes in after being teed up by Sheyi Ojo. The pair reversed roles just before half-time as the on-loan Liverpool youngster swept home.
And Ojo was back on the wing laying on Morelos for this ninth goal in eight games this season just after the break to ensure Evander Da Silva Ferreira’s late goal for the Danes was a mere consolation.
And Gerrard had a message for Erik Sviatchenko at full-time, gesturing to the former Celtic defender to zip it as he made his way down the tunnel.
“I just wished him all the best for the remainder of the season,” said the Ibrox boss with a wry smile. “He had obviously been speaking quite a lot through the media over where he is from.
“So it was just a little send-off for him.
“I thought we were outstanding, certainly for the first hour.
“Once the game was out of sight and we got too comfortable, we stopped doing the basics well and became a bit sloppy and a bit careless.
“Then they got a goal back but I think up until they scored we were outstanding over the course of both ties and certainly deserve to be in the qualifying rounds.
“We need to keep pushing and going and building momentum. We are in a really good place with everyone healthy and a new signing coming in.
Midtjylland boss Kenneth Andersen admitted his side could not live with a team he believes can go far.
He said: “It was a tough night for my team, but congratulations to Rangers because over the two games they have been much sharper than us.
“I believe Rangers can go past the next round and into the group stages for sure.”