Gerrard targeting FA Cup double for Reds

January 3, 2007

Steven Gerrard has set his sights on becoming the first Liverpool captain to lift the FA Cup twice.

The 26-year-old skipper, who was awarded an MBE in the New Year's Honours List, got his hands on the famous trophy last May after a remarkable penalty shoot-out victory over West Ham.

His side begin their defence with one of the toughest possible tests this weekend when Arsenal visit Anfield in the third round.

However, the England midfielder is determined to help his home-town club retain the trophy for the first time in their history and set his own personal record.

He said: 'I know Liverpool have never won the FA Cup two years in a row, but this team likes breaking records and rewriting history, and this is another statistic we want to put right.

'We all remember how we won the competition last season and we are keen to do it again.

'I would love nothing better than to lift the trophy again at the new Wembley at the end of the season.'

Ron Yeats was the first Liverpool captain to pick up the FA Cup in 1965, and he has been followed since by Emlyn Hughes, Alan Hansen, Ronnie Whelan, Mark Wright and, with the help of Jamie Redknapp and Robbie Fowler, Sami Hyypia since.

Gerrard became the latest man to accept the most treasured of domestic cups last season after inspiring the Merseysiders to a remarkable fightback at the Millennium Stadium.

He twice levelled after West Ham had taken 2-0 and 3-2 leads, the second of his goals coming in spectacular style at the end of normal time.

Gerrard was also on target in the shoot-out as the Reds won 3-1, and the euphoria he experienced that day is the perfect motivation for another crack at the big prize and he is relishing the challenge of facing Arsenal.

He told the club's official website: 'The draw could have been kinder, but the important thing is we are at home. They will be fearing the tie more than we will.

'They are a top side with top players and we know it's going to be a very difficult game.

'But we have proved we can beat anybody at Anfield and I'm sure it's going to be a terrific match this weekend. We are certainly all looking forward to it.

'We have got a really strong squad, we are playing well at the moment and I fancy us to be in the draw for the fourth round.'